Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I Am Mother

I cannot say this often enough about parents... we love them, we hate them then we become them.

My Father's Day gift to Tats was a balloon twisting workshop in UP Diliman last Sunday. It was a seven hour session yet he still wanted the entire household to be around so I prepared for a Sunken Garden picnic for Nacho, Riza and me. Alas, parking is no longer allowed along the oval rim and it was mighty inconvenient to lug Nacho with his stuff, the banig, food and drinks from the car. Given my very limited navigational skills, I drove around the campus once and decided to go back to the ISSI Building where we deposited Tats.

The workshop was at the third floor so I was delighted that on the second floor was a very spacious hallway. There we laid out our picnic paraphernalia complete with iPod and speakers spewing Mother Goose and Filipino nursery rhymes. Nacho quickly went exploring his tiled new playground down on all fours - kids on Bible study break came over to play with him. Tats came down with his first creations; 2 balloons inside a big clear one and a balloon bouquet that really did look like a flower.

We took a quick snack of the sandwiches and pasta dish we brought. Then one look at Nacho's dusty limbs told me that a wet towel just wont do so I whisked him to the Ladies' Room and gave him a quick bath over one sink. Refreshed, we laid on his cot and a momentary latch rendered him knocked out! Riza fell asleep on a bench too when torrential rains poured complete with thunderclaps and lightnings but the two were unfazed.

Seeing my contingent in deep sleep despite the refugee-camp set-up, I could not help but remember my mom. She always brought baon (packed food) wherever we went... and although it always seemed like she carried too much classified into appetizer, main course, dessert and chichiriya, the containers were always empty by the time we got home.I particularly remember the millenium countdown (2000) event at The Fort -it was just a vacant lot back then and the commute was inconvenient enough that my mom still had me and my sisters carry food baskets and a picnic mat. Seeing people our age in full gimik gear, we three girls wished the ground would crack open and swallow us unseen. But true enough, when fireworks lit up the midnight sky, we were comfortably spread out on the mat with yummy food within reach while the rest had to crane their necks to witness the pyro extravaganza that remains unparalled to this day.

When Nacho woke up, I read him a book while Riza packed up and loaded most of our stuff in the car. Then Tats came down with balloons on his head, around his arms and in his hands. The seven hour wait was not as grueling as I feared it would be. But perhaps I've become more patient for my family... just like my mother was to me.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Mrs. Gump

Now I totally get it... Mrs.Gump on her deathbed saying, "God put me on this earth to become your mother". Back when I saw the movie I thought, how sad for a woman to base the significance of her existence on the child she bore... sure Forrest was a wonderful human being but he's still a separate person... was she not important on her own? It was also the same year when Sushmita Sen uttered her response that the "essense of a woman" is in her ability for childbirth bagging her the crown of Ms.Universe 1994.

I am scared shitless that I might screw up as a mom. My son is turning a year old in August and it bothers me that he's temperamental and intensely stubborn. When he wants to be carried and I don't want to give in, he can cry for what seem like hours while throwing an accusing look at me. I've had some success with setting his feeding habits, making him comfortable in water and introducing him to nursery rhymes but the systems I build would easily fall apart in one unsupervised day. I fervently pray that he grows up to be a good, healthy and happy person but I have no idea excatly how I can make it happen.

I understand now that Mrs. Gump was not referring to her significance in the eyes of other people but rather to herself. She was able to raise an incredible human being which to a mother... trumps a successful career or even marriage.