Preserving Memories: Strength in the Second Life of a Single Mom
At the age of 28, Lorelie “Lie” Hernandez got pregnant out of wedlock. After she gave birth to a son, she had profuse bleeding because of uterine atony and had to be sent back to the OR. At that moment, she had a near-death experience she can’t forget.
“I [was dead for] seven seconds. They had to revive me.”
During the seven seconds in her flatline state, she saw a very bright light and a man’s hand, telling her to come with him. She was supposed to reach the man’s hand until a very beautiful image of a lady appeared in her vision. Lie opened her eyes and was revived.
What happened to Lie brought tears of joy to her OB who was leaning on her feet, telling her it was the first time it happened. Lie laughed at the memory of it, and even said, “Gusto ko tadyakan eh, para sabihing buhay ako.”
God worked a miracle for her as she lives her second life. Lie believes that God has a reason to allow this to happen; that is, to fulfill God’s purpose for her as she gains more strength from her Savior. She praises God for she’s still alive.
Lie had a hysterectomy right after she gave birth. Her surgeries were cesarean section and hysterectomy in 2003, total thyroidectomy in 2016, cholecystectomy in 2018, and—just lately this year—brain surgery. What was just painful from all these experiences was that core biopsy of the lump in her breast; her right breast was swollen and bruised for a week.
Just like Lie’s father, uncles, brother, and eldest sister, she is an OFW working in one of the private hospitals in Dubai, UAE. She grew up with the notion that working abroad means earning a lot of money—but not everything is as it seems.
“I thought that being an OFW is an easy-peasy job. I was wrong. I am the youngest [among] four siblings and I can say that the adults around me [had] sheltered me so much from ‘reality’. I do not blame them, but I think I [was] just not ready when I [faced] reality myself.”
After all the experiences she had, unfortunately, the father of her son left them for another woman, three years into their relationship. As Lie playfully pointed, “Sumakabilang bahay, literally!”
She has been raising her son with the help of her siblings who are all very supportive. Her son is now 19 years old studying in his first year of college, taking up Radiation Technology. She even thought that maybe his son took this course upon knowing the procedures that were done to his mom in the past.
By surrendering her life to God, Lie has been much stronger even now that she’s facing another battle of her life as dramatically ‘real’ as it can be.
“I am battling stage 4 breast cancer that has metastasized to the lungs and brain. I had brain surgery, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy. I am still undergoing chemotherapy. Praise God for the strength.”
Lie loves the smell of paper; she prefers reading physical books more than ebooks. She also loves snail mail, scrapbooking, diamond painting, acrylic painting, bead crafts, paper twirling, loom bands, and rosary bead crafting. There may be a lot of things that Lie has been already doing and has done in this world, but there’s this one thing that Lie has been wanting to do: to write a book—a memoir of her life, offering an inspiring portrait of peace, obedience, hope, and strength.
“Honesty goes a long way. Always tell the truth. . .I [would like to] write [a book] because I want to preserve the moment and I want the world to know about something—or anything. I want to remember well and write a book before I die.”
Lie also added, “With the little strength I have, I [will] give it [all] to God. I’ll serve the Lord [in] whatever capacity. Kahit hinang-hina na ako, para kay Lord lahat [nang] ito.”
Here’s Lie’s message to all aspiring writers:
“If you want to tell about yourself, your story–write it down…to preserve the memories. That would help the future generation–or the people–who would need [your story] at that time and inspire all of them.”
Facts About Lorelie Hernandez
Lorelie is a student of Scribblory’s devotional writing workshop and memoir writing bootcamp.
Lie wrote diaries and slam books when she was in grade school. She has been sending snail mails to random people since grade school through the help of an online website. When she was in high school, she was sending random mails–in a form of letters– to religious organizations she would read from magazines—some replied, some did not.
She’s currently a member of post crossing wherein she would send postcards to random people all over the world. Her article about her hiking journey in one of the highest mountains in the Southern Region of Saudi Arabia was featured in Saudi Gazette. Some of her Filipino lifestyle articles were featured in Arab news (Middle East newspaper) in Saudi Arabia. She has written in the newsletter of her current company in Dubai, UAE. Currently, she is part of the team doing the content for The Late Night Worship of Couples for Christ, UAE.
Lie’s favorite Bible verses are found in Leviticus 26:10, John 15:13, and Joshua 1:8.