Episode 3: The Gift

GACKT shared the story 「プレゼント」(The Gift) through his Official Facebook page (this post).

Staff Introduction

We’re bringing you behind the scenes stories of the making of “P.S. I LOVE U”!

GACKT will release his 44th single, “P.S. I LOVE U,” on February 12th. After over six months of fretfully rewriting the lyrics and singing them in different ways, this song has evolved to the point that GACKT himself has called it his “legacy.”

While working on the lyrics, seeking to answer the question “what is the ultimate expression of love,” GACKT gathered up all sorts of videos and letters that told a variety of stories, each time surrounding himself with the essence of love. Taking it all in, he made “P.S. I LOVE U.”

This is the third part of GACKT’s journey making this song.

GACKT’s Introduction

[Episode 3] The Gift

This time, we have a story from the point of view of someone left behind. The boy’s single-minded determination and the warmth of the people around him who made great efforts to help, got me right in the heart. I felt once again that many people are moved to action by the desperate desire to cheer up loved ones.

I myself love to set up surprises, so much so that I couldn’t begin to tell of all the ones I’ve planned up till now for friends and family. The one thing I can say that all these instances had in common was that, like the little boy in the story, as I was planning the surprise my head was full of thoughts of the person I wanted to surprise: remembering in detail their every single move, always thinking what I could do that would make them happy. I get to create an event that the person I’m doing it for will be able to think of as the best moment ever, and I also get to spend time thinking deeply about that person. So for me, doing this sort of thing is fun, and it makes me happy.

This is a sad story, but thanks to the warmth of the people in it who did everything they could to make this one moment special, the story becomes about more than sadness. Don’t you think so?

You’ve probably experienced this too, right? Going all out for the one you love.

The Gift (プレゼント)

Yesterday I got a letter from a fourth grade elementary school child asking for advice. The letter said:

I want my mother to feel better, so I want to buy her a gift. But I only have 329 yen from my allowance. What can I get with that much that a girl would like?

This boy’s mother has cancer and won’t live much longer. But he doesn’t know that.

Today I took the boy to a department store.

“I wonder if Mom’s on a diet? She doesn’t eat at all, she just laughs and goes hungry. Maybe I can buy diet snacks.”

“Can I buy shoes? I wanna go to an aquarium with Mom!”

“A letter? That’s embarrassing! Mmm…but I’ll try to write her one. I’ll write it in an origami crane!”

“I wonder if I can buy flowers? But it’s sad when they dry up. So maybe I should make it a cactus?”

“Mom’s hands were cold. Can I buy gloves? But she could only use them in the winter, huh?”

“Mom said she wanted to eat caviar! I wonder if I can buy that?”

Tears welled up in my eyes each time the boy spoke about his mother.

“I got it! I’m getting her shoes! I wanna go to a bunch of places with Mom!”

There’s no way you can buy shoes with 300 yen!

While the boy went to the restroom, I went over to the shoe department and explained the situation to the clerk. I asked if it were possible to sell shoes to the boy for 300 yen. Of course, I planned on paying the rest later. The clerk kindly agreed.

When I took the boy to the shoe department, there was a paper sign that said everything was 300 yen. It was crude, like it was made in a hurry, but it moved me deeply.

“I’m getting these!”

He’d chosen a pair of white heels. When I tried to pay the difference later, the clerk said to me, smiling, “They’re 300 yen, so they were paid in full.” My heart was overflowing with gratitude.

The boy said to me, “I can’t wait to see my mother’s face when she sees these!” So we headed to the hospital.

“Mom, present for you!” he said loudly, opening the hospital room door with a smile. Surprised, the mother opened the gift. When she saw what was inside, she started crying.

“Oh, thank you. But…I’m sorry. I don’t think I’ll be able to put on shoes and go out anymore. I might die.”

The boy looked surprised, and said with downcast eyes,

“People who lived with all their heart and soul become stars! And stars that shine with all their might are reborn as people! When I look up at the stars, I’ll see you, so I won’t be lonely! But you have to try hard to live. So don’t give up, do your very best!

I wanna go to the aquarium with you! And I bought big shoes, so you won’t outgrow them, ever!”

The mother wiped her tears, and gave her son a big hug, smiling.

If any of you out there are on the verge of giving up due to an illness or some other tough situation, please remember the boy’s words. Even this little immature child says that it’s important not to give up, to do the best you can.

Don’t throw in the towel. Fight on!

{Note: I originally posted this story’s translation to my personal blog with the title “The Present.”}

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