Every now and then, my husband would send me old photos of our family to sprinkle my daily struggles with a dash of family love and hope. I was looking at this last one that he sent me. It is indeed a pretty picture. Little did I know that my son was peering over my shoulder, looking at the picture too. He looked closer as I was already in a pensive mood. Prince is now 8 years old. He suddenly blurted out, “I miss myself!” And sighed. I laughed loudly at that one. I miss his baby days. I’m glad he misses that too! This picture didn’t only bring me love and hope but a heartwarmingly funny, memorable moment!
For a long time, I lived in Subic. There are acknowledged signature restaurants in Subic that I hold dear in my heart. One of them is Meatplus Cafe. Over a recent weekend, we had the chance to go back home to Subic. Of course, we didn’t miss the chance to dine at Meatplus.
This Subic signature is known for its steaks. They have the best cuts in town. Quality is assured. And the way they cook their steaks is perfect, according to the way you want it. The family ordered steaks according to their gastronomic desire. All were pleasantly served and the taste was just how we remember Meatplus quality! I noticed though that as the kids have really grown bigger, full meals are now being served! No more sharing. The kids were excited about Potato Skin – also a Meatplus staple. It sure is a guilty pleasure!
“We are ordered to go to Tacloban. We need to help out in the relief distribution,” this was my husband’s message in a previous phone call. His ship takes on the duty to help out rebuilding the lives of Filipinos in the Visayan region. Immediately, he implied that this might mean longer days of being apart and missing the Holiday break altogether. At first, I was pretty disappointed but I heard the determination in my husband’s voice to help and to be of service. Because of that, I knew I had to take that stance too. I must prepare the kids. As we were one with the nation and the world feeling for Typhoon Haiyan’s victims, we gave what we can, sending out boxes of basic needs, participating in the school’s drive to organize relief packages and consciously minimizing our trivial everyday complaints. I realize that having our family patriarch out there is an ultimate sacrifice and a source of pride.
The pictures above say it all. The screeching visions of despair and sadness are enough to break one’s heart but the response of the world to the cries of a tiny country somewhere gives light to a darkness I have never imagined. There’s always light. There’s hope, always.
Okay, so every mother knows that the kids will grow up and step into the world on their own — somehow, someday, no matter what. There’s no definite date to define that moment, no birthday to set the deadline. Often times, it is the trivial moments that smack us mothers in the head that your child is no longer a baby, no matter how much we stress, “You’ll always be my baby.”
That moment came to me when a boy knocked on my doorstep to ask me permission for him to bring my daughter to their school dance. I was surprised. I expected that but when the exact moment came, I was skeptical. I saw how the lad was trying his best to talk to me. I made sure he didn’t sense my ambivalence. I got through it with the calmness and kindness that I have always wanted. My belief is always to be cordial, open-minded with the children so that in return, they can talk to me and express themselves the way they want to.
Checking her calendar, I saw this.
So yesterday, we went a little shopping, courtesy of her dad. I wanted her to go through the whole fun process…picking out just the right dress, slipping your feet through different kinds of shoes until you feel ‘just perfect,’ practicing walking in your ‘look.’ I knew she was excited. I wanted to go along with her excitement while reminding her how she should behave and how prudent one must be even while having fun in life.