Another of Those Motherhood Dramas

November 25th, 2011

Bliss.
I have understood that now as a mother to my eleven-year-old son and nine-year-old daughter. In contrast to what I perceived before as an overrated show of affection & protectiveness parents have for their children, I kind of feel a sense of enlightenment from ignorance, a fundamental shift away from self-focus to a more nurturing, compassionate, doting side of the self.

This morning, as the kids dress up for school, I realized how grown-up they have become. Gone are the days when my arms and shoulder would suffer night and day from carrying their chubby little bodies. I miss those moments when I have to lull them to sleep, feed them with baby food, or wash their chocolate-stained baby clothes. I smiled at the reminiscence of their first taste of education. Elmo only turned three when I enrolled him at a preparatory school. It was funny how amazed his teacher was that he’s more familiar with his senior classmates about shapes, alphabet, numbers, etc. He can even recite the abcd‘s in reverse order, and answers his activity books way before the school year ends. There was one occasion I asked his yaya to erase all his answers from the book.

I looked at Elmo and Faith now and I can’t help but utter a silent/sincere thanks, we (husband and I) probably are doing a great job. Aside from occasional bouts of childhood silliness, my children are every parents’ dream. Sweet and responsible kids. They both do well in school. Not that I’m grade-conscious, nonetheless, I feel proud seeing high marks on their report card. Second grading period surprised me with an average of 98% for my daughter and 95% for my son, who is, by the way, going to graduate from primary school this year.

Bliss is that sudden leap of joy when you hear them say “Nanay, alis na po ako/kami. I love you.” An instant reminder of God’s infinite, unconditional love for humanity. Bliss is the unexplainable urge to be a better person no matter what. Bliss is resolving to weather any kind of storms to protect them from things that may hamper their full potential’s development. Bliss is just being thankful. For these precious gifts.

Pure, Unadulterated,Wednesday “High”

November 23rd, 2011

 

You think life is hard as shit? Oops. Not too quick. Think again. You see, life can be uber fun and rife with pleasant surprises. It can be harsh, yes, but it can also take you to a whole new level.

Yesterday, I was absolutely floating in mid air. Zero gravity, dude! And if it isn’t obvious enough why this sudden “high”, here’s why.

I browsed eBay for something I’d been hoping to have since early this year. In 2010, I had to shell out my entire Christmas bonus and savings as counterpart for my parents’ piece of land in Bicol. I didn’t actually bought anything for myself. But I finally found this thing on eBay and was instantly mesmerized. It’s been discounted at 30 percent off. Instead of paying its original price pegged at 8.5K, I was able to have it 5.9K.


A day after my payment confirmation, I received an email stating when I shall be receiving my package. A couple of days more and voila, I already get to enjoy its many surprises. Life after all isn’t all crap and shit.

Now I will have a reason not to squeeze in my schedule the yearly book fair, which is quite inconvenient on my part as I’m not based in Manila. Besides, my Amazon Kindle 3 can hold up to 3,500 book titles. Suck it! Hahaha. The only downside, I guess, is that I can’t have local (Filipino) titles. But aside from that, all else is upside: battery life, wireless coverage, PDF support, text-to-speech, plus stacking up against competition. This is one of the best e-readers, so the reviewers claim.

There’s a new version called Kindle Fire that comes in full color, but I’m after functionality. I just need to read, so I don’t mind if my e-reader comes in black and white.

Out of excitement, I asked hubby to fill my Amazon Kindle 3 with books by interesting and favorite authors – Stephen King, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Amy Tan, Chuck Palahniuk, David Sedaris, Franz Kafka, Harper Lee, Ian MacEwan, Malcolm Gladwell, Stieg Larrson, and a lot more. Am currently poring my eyes at Tucker Max’s “Assholes Finish First”, and Steig Larrson’s “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest”.

I can’t thank the heavens enough. Thank you, Universe!

*****************

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions.”

Rainer Maria Rilke (Austro-German lyric poet, author of Duino Elegies and Sonnets to Orpheus, 1875-1926)

Taking Off

November 9th, 2011

 

Blank, empty, white, clean space.

I’ve been straining my eyes staring endlessly at my monitor, wondering how to start converting a 500-paged report into a single page file. Overnight.

For a while, I thought ‘relaxing” would do the trick. You know the drill: clear the mind, be still, be positive, etcetera etcetera.  It’s not working for me though. Re-reading and going through the file makes it all the more complicated.

How do you perform such a “miracle” without losing the essence of the entire report? What are the odds that what you will produce will still be able to cover all the essentials of the document? I am speaking here of a year’s worth of accomplishments – replete with figures and numbers, and hordes of technical/scientific terms. The paper is literally pregnant with all that.

How about employing some “black magic”, I told my officemate,  if only to comply with the requirement. Times like this make me want to double-take and question whether I am staying at the right place, at the right time.

When situations similar to this crop up, I imagine how easily I brushed through my work as program director for scholarship in one private company, or how fulfilling it was working in the academe. I think about the excitement of my NGO stint as a fresh graduate. Is it worth my sanity now to be worrying on a task so simple yet so daunting?

Then again, aren’t challenges supposed to enrich us? The universe is trying to make a point, and a very good one.  It might be trying to instill how “immediacy” can create a state-of-the-art learning environment. You get all the benefits akin to a traditional workshop setting, like you’re being subjected to a schedule that must work for you!

My respite? Crafting a compelling piece or article. Funny, but somehow I get to manage my own life that way. By taking a “detour” in order to prevent stagnancy. You don’t stand still when you’re stuck in a rut lest you become vulnerable to extinction. You get a diversion and do something else.

When you can’t take off with a certain task, celebrate brilliance and creativity!

There. I am so magulo. It shows.

 

Hello, November

November 2nd, 2011

There goes another “long” weekend. Save for some house cleaning and occasional online spree, I have nothing else to brag (read: blog. haha). Four days went off like a mad shooting star, soaring through the earth in nanoseconds flat. Why, if it were indeed a real meteor, I hardly would ever have a chance to “wish”.  Days pass by so quickly.

Wouldn’t it be lovelier if days and nights were longer?

Anyhoo, no matter what the circumstances, there’s still a lot to to be truly thankful of.  For one, I slept really hard (and good) last night. Deep sleep. The kind that would take you to another realm. Nyahaha. Oh well, some long-forgotten faces appeared in my dream as if they were still very much part of my so-called life.  It reminds me of what others would claim, that when a person appears in your dream,  it means you are being thought of. T’was fascinating though (I mean, the images)…with neat-looking shanties, and pools of water, and nice people…

We just bid October goodbye, and soon after we will all be saying bye-bye to the year that was 2011. Sure enough, many of us keep a treasure trove of bittersweet November memories. I have plenty in my memory box. To me, November is…

  • the synchronized howling of winds and dog wails upon the cold air, sending chills to your spine, marking the beginning of (creepy) marathon stories that will scare the shits out of you
  • spending trips to the countryside, taking part in youth activities such as the “never-ending” roadside beautification, sports competitions, Ms. Gay, Ms. Purok, Ms. Wah, Ms. Patola, yada yada
  • fresh new start to the school year’s second semester, an exciting event after laboring the bloody and discombobulating first semester
  • preparing for the Yuletide season: caroling practice/sessions with the “tropa”, Christmas tree-decorating and lantern-making
  • having to hold hands with the first (dummy?) boyfriend
  • giving that first unsuccessful try at hard liquor (Ginebra)!
  • taking a shot at your first broken heart (hurray)
  • the strong smell of brown earth after the rain,
  • the scent of smoke after burning all the dried coconut palm and mango leaves at your front yard
  • lamenting an unrequited love (ouch)
  • spending all you’ve earned from your first small-time job after college, typing away data from hundreds of field interviews, and seeing mixed emotions from parents: happiness because you’ve finally grown teeny-tiny wings of independence, and pity because you were earning too small

We might not notice, but sometimes life does things in order to prove a point, or to simply prove that sometimes life is nothing but a “pointless exercise”.  Whatever.

Chewing on a Stone

October 20th, 2011

“Raising children is like chewing on a stone”, says a popular Arab teaching.  Exactly the metaphor to describe how being a parent is one of the hardest tasks there is.  Parenthood is not as simple as saying omph, and voila…the child sloshes out of your womb. You, my dear, are helping shape another life. That of your child.

When you think about it, financial security is not really what young people today needs in order to survive their generation. It isn’t about the fact that you can clothe them well or feed them, or send them to the best schools. The more important thing I guess is how you can help them to become “themselves”. Or, to put it more bluntly, how they will be able to truly find themselves.

I have come to realize this after so many times of facing and exorcising my own demons. We all have that moment, or time, when we come face to face with darkness. That certain moment when you feel that you are never good enough…or when everything is not just good enough. When you doubt your strength, your ability, your talent. Absurd, I know.

These are the times when you question the internal/emotional anguish that you feel you probably do not deserve. And these normally happens when you aren’t acquainted with the “you” that is supposed-to-be “you”. Get it? When you have not fully blossomed into the person that you must be, when the noise around drowns you , and you end up uncertain which way to go, or how to proceed. Sometimes, painful as it may seem, its other people’s way that wins.

However, kids these days are more intelligent. And  I am thankful of that, because for me, parenthood is one big role you must play and must play to the hilt. Perhaps I am not doing quite well in this area, but I’m learning.

My two children are so strong-willed. They know what they want, and it’s sad that sometimes I get in their way. How can they be themselves if I keep on imposing my own rules?  People can be beyond rhyme or reason. It may partly be due to our own genetic programming or something. Superiority complex? We think we are the better ones, being the adult.

They have to be given freedom to realize things on their own. As what Ernest Dimnet quotes: “Children have to be educated, but they have also to be left to educate themselves”

Page 5 of 36
1 3 4 5 6 7 36