Ode to Ishha

A couple of days ago, a good friend asked me if there was a particular point in time I’d like to return to (she was skimming through a book called, “The 8 Stages of Healing” as I nursed my migraine.) I thought about it and even if I really wouldn’t want to “go back” to any age because I am quite happy where I am, I said, “Maybe, high school or well,college. And not because it was the best years of my life, mind you, but because I want a do-over. Those were a lot of unhappy years I’d like to undo now that I know how to be happy.” Anyway, that question was okay, as most questions go but today when I found out that a very special person, a person really dear to me was moving away, abruptly and so soon, I couldn’t help but think of a question I would rather answer.

Who do I wish I were more like when I was going through many unhappy years as a youngster (read: might have spared me a lot of unnecessary drama and my own fifth of a quarter life identity crisis)? The answer? Well, that’s easy. Little bits from everyone in the Potluck Collective (that includes you, Kapitan). But since this is an Ode to Ish, here is what I wish…(see what I did there?)

GCAP Water You Waiting For Fair, Jan 2011

I wish I were as honest about my vulnerability and secure about my voice, my friendships, my writing, and myself. Just like her.

Vito's surprise birthday thing, Sagada February, 2011

I wish I were as smart and candid and well, as kind and generous.

St. Joseph's Inn, Sagada, February 2011

I wish I were sillier. Nuff said.

The rice fields, Sagada, February 2011

I wish I were one of the guys but not resented by the girls for being one of the guys. You know what I mean.

Commencement Ceremony, The B Auditorium, May 2011

I wish I chose better partners, made decisions based on love and not fear so these relationships lasted longer and listened to my mom more.

Post Commencement Ceremony Dinner, Blue Leaf, May 2011

I wish I were a better older sister. Just like her.

The Endless/Potluck Collective sans a few members

I wish Erik Mahusay here didn’t play his part so well. (Kidding.)

Anyway, I guess if We Are Here, Exactly Where We Need To Be, there’s no need to wish these things because we do reach a place where we can know and love ourselves (thank goodness); where there’s nothing but gratitude for who we’ve been and everything we’ve been through because it informs the wonderful We’s and Us’s we are right now. And I totally stand by that. Except today, this is what I wish for the young insecure me after having met this young person. I realize there are/were better ways to be, no matter who your dad is, no matter what you’ve been through, no matter what life throws at you, no matter what comes next. You can come out of it unscathed, quite cool, extremely intelligent and well, happy, like A.

You will be missed, Ishha14. Keep on writing. All of it can be fodder for your art. I am a big fan. 🙂

who are you,little i by ee cummings

who are you, little i

(five or six years old)
peering from some high

window;at the gold

of november sunset

(and feeling:that if day
has to become night

this is a beautiful way)

grateful slice: Anastasia



  1. Kapitan Tandem

    I agree with everything in this ode. No, I don’t want to be Ishha! Though she has a pair of svelte sandals that make me wish I was a young lady…

    But anyway, those qualities you mentioned are spot on. And high school and college do-overs are very tempting. I don’t think the collective would like the same-age-as-they-are-now me very much. But what stops me from being all for that is I probably won’t be in the same place now if I wasn’t such a screw up in high school and college.

    And yes, I also agree on Erik’s portrayal.

    • ishha14

      (shit, accidentally pressed reply gah.) -s! I gotta say though, this paints me to be a hell of a lot cooler than I seem to be normally. There’s nothing else to say other than thank you from the bottom of my…. intestines? (they seem to have more volume then my hearth does) for the past two years (and you too kaptain for this one).

  2. Ms. P

    You’re welcome, ish. Litratula friend told me to tell you to never stop writing. Love love love.

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