we love most...

7:51 PM Wednesday, November 28, 2007

... those whom we love first.

Whoever said that must already know that it isn't even generally true. But of course, one must grant a certain acknowledgment of firsts.

Heaven knows I didn't marry my first love. And although i'm the firstborn child, my mother's devotion will always be my younger brother's.

But I remember how my niece Ela and nephew Pyro brought alive the motherly, nurturing, protective instincts in me... driving me to do things I wouldn't normally do... like swallow my pride.

And for those memories, I will always be theirs for the taking, so to speak.

I am positive that I will love all my children, not in the same way most probably, with all of me, same way that I love my husband. But I look at my son and cannot help but feel a little sad for his siblings who will be born to us someday...

For I might not have the time or energy to enjoy just watching them sleep.

Or documenting their every move.

And memorizing every grimace.

And carving in stone every threshold crossed.

Mostly because Yakee is surely around to make kulit.

I look at my son and wonder if he'd ever get to appreciate the privilege of being born first. Of having everyone graciously excited over you, the first blessing to a union. Of being the one who will set standards for the other kids.

We love most those whom we love first. Hmmm. I guess in a way, it will be true, one just have to qualify the statement a little more.

I'd always love Yakee most because he was the first who taught me about being responsible for somebody else's life, health, well-being and future.

I'm sure my (future) other kids have other lessons to teach me, and i'd love them most for bringing alive in me something more, something greater, something better.


While watching my son sleep, I also cannot help but be sad sometimes... that somewhere, there is a child smiling in his sleep without anyone to witness it, without anyone to rejoice over it, feel gratitude for it and be humbled by it.

Surely, every child deserves the same...

crossing thresholds

7:10 PM Monday, November 19, 2007

Because of my pregnancy, my sister resigned herself to the fact that i'd be busy come her graduation. And because myn parents prioritized buying a car abroad in preparation of her settling there, she resigned herself further that no parent will be present at her graduation.

So she kept reminding my cousin and my brotehr and sister-in-law to make time for her on her graduation. And she'd bombard them with text messages and woeful self-pitying at night.

I knew she'd have loved it if I could be available but I simply couldn't, exclusively breastfeeding as I am and recuperating from my CS delivery. And that week she was about to march down that aisle and claim her diploma, we had some falling out.

What she didn't know was that we've all known for months that my Mom is using her last money to come home and surprise her. Not sure if my Mom gave in to my pestering about how our youngest deserves a parent to be there for her, or she's been planning it all along.

Anyway, two days before her graduation, my sister was as usual lamenting the fact that she will be without a parent (and i like to believe, more depressed than usual because I haven't forgiven her yet... made all the more unbearable because she couldn't play with my baby all she wants given that we're not on speaking terms). Unbeknownst to her, my hubs and brother went to fetch my Mom at the airport.

My cousin left her to mull over her sad thoughts for a while... and then a knock came and she screamed in surprise to see her mother at my (old) bedroom door. I guess you could say she was immensely surprised and happy.

That night, we also made up.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket I would admit to sadness that I was unable to see my sister, my very first baby, cross this particular threshold in all the pomp and boring ritual of a graduation rite. And as much as a relief this must be for my parents to finally graduate from paying tuition fees and what-not, i'm sure my Mom also was not without sadness when she watched her baby all made up and marching down that aisle.

Congratulations to both...

And world, we let loose on you another Nursing grad... one who didn't read my instructions posted on the fridge yesterday and fed my baby cold breastmilk while I was away. Yes, heaven help us all.

But I love her so much... and am so proud of these two women in my life.

Robinson's Place - Midtown Wing

11:18 AM Friday, November 16, 2007

It's still not as huge as Mall of Asia, which has its own Ocean Adventure park, carnival and convention center, but since it's almost my second home, the opening of Robinson's Place's Midtown Wing (and the return of Starbucks, bless me) is such a thrill treat for yours truly.

I don't really care about the new shops and resto... but I am amazed at the sheer size of this addition... to think i've been going to Rob since it was only a small, solitary building and rife with bad publicity (the snake child thing and the booming sex trade). I guess you could say, I grew with this mall. Hehe.

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sadder than Anne Frank

8:43 PM Thursday, November 08, 2007

Marianette Amper is not a prisoner of war. She was a 12-year old child living in one of the most beautiful places i've ever been to...

She was not a prisoner of war. She was not exactly choice-less. I don't even think she's the poorest girl there is. Other girls in Africa probably have sadder plights, have had more bad days. But at age 12, she's gotten to a point already where she was without hope.

And all that's left of her is a notebook turned into a diary, detailing her sadness over not being able to go to school... over their poverty... over her parents' fights.

I can't even begin to consider the implication of Marianette Amper... partly because I may have been part of the problem that had given her no hope, no reprieve, no guiding light, no saving grace. She is yet another child victimized by the collective decisions and complacency and corruption and selfishness of the adults around her.

Always, it is the innocents that have to be sacrificed.

Mamay and Bigkis

3:12 PM Friday, November 02, 2007

a bigkis is a piece of cloth tied around a baby's waist, esply newborns to prevent gas and the baby's pee from getting to his belly button. some say it also prevents hernia in baby boys, and give baby girls tiny waists.


I have a teeny-weeny problem.

During my pregnancy, all my Mom asked was that I use a bigkis on my son, and that we use a book for his first pillow. That's all.

Well, using a bigkis is not in vogue anymore. It really doesn't have any medical relevance, and considering the heat in Manila, is just annoying for a baby and additional laundry really.

But I still bought 6 pieces of bigkis (the new type with ribbons, and not the triangular cloth pieces) because I did intend for my son to wear them... esply if my Mother came home for his birth.

But she didn't. She opted rather to delay her homecoming to time it with my sister's, her youngest child, graduation this November. So the wearing of the bigkis was also delayed.

And because my baby sometimes get fussy, we don't know whether to connect it to the two occasions I did use a bigkis on him.

Anyway, am now bent on using a bigkis on my son... esply since he is gassy but mostly because my Mom arrives in 4 days. And why do I want to please my Mom so where this is concerned, you ask, considering I didn't heed her other advices (like mix feeding and continuing to work)? It's really because of Mamay, my maternal grandma.

Using a bigkis is a Filipino tradition that is still alive in many provinces and households in the country. And it's a tradition Mamay passed onto my Mom, which I had always wanted to be passed to me. It's not harmful in any way, anyway, and the concept would always take me back to a childhood when Mamay was alive and i'd watch her, or her daughters (my Mom or aunt), wrap this triangular cloth around a baby's waist, snugly, before putting any other piece of clothing on the baby.

A bigkis bound a waist, and it has binded me to dreams of motherhood as well. In the same way that i've always known i'd be a mother, in the same way that i've always wanted to be a mother, I have also always known i'd use a bigkis on my child. Just because.

I admit my beloved grandmother is probably frowning that she has yet to see me lovingly dedicated to this particular tradition, but she must also be smiling too because I remember her more and more now, as the years pass and I grow old... because she's always set some standard of motherhood and grandparenthood for me... and I truly, truly miss her.

Heck, I even reminded my Mom that Mamay was always beside a child when a grandchild is born... hoping my Mom will be ashamed a little and come home to be at my side. I know, i'm bad.

I'm just also that devoted to Mamay.


In a weird way, I can't decide who I miss more... Mamay or Py, in this day for lost loved ones.