Remember the Good Old Days with Your Mother
Early 1970s. "Nanay" carrying her 5th child. Front row, third from left is me.
Thirty Eight Years Ago
I was in grade school thirty eight years ago when our teacher in Home Economics told us that we should not leave everything to our mothers, like washing clothes and under wears. Even children who have housemaids must learn how to do household chores because it is awful to grow up not knowing how to wash and iron clothes, how to wash dishes, how to sweep the floor, and most specially, how to cook meals! Although I forgot the name of our teacher then, this is an opportunity to thank her because when I got home from school that day, I saw my mother washing clothes manually. (We had no washing machine then. Maybe it was not yet invented or the Philippines was really 20 years behind the technology.) Seeing her that afternoon focused on the laundry, I pondered on the lesson I just learned from school. So I offered help by washing my undies. She looked back and smiled. I hardly remember what were the words she uttered but reflecting on that scene alone right at this very moment, tears are rolling down my cheeks. I consider that scene as one of the good times with my mother.
The Good Old Days
I remember the good old days I had with my "Nanay" when I was a little bit older than I was on the 1970s picture. We once visited on Christmas season my eldest sister's godparents living in nearby cities to collect presents. Gifts were already prepared for my sister but because her four siblings were also lined-up in their living room, we each receive a five-peso bill. Those days? Five pesos mean so much! You could buy lots of chocolates, candies and toys. There were times mother and I alone would sneak our way to my only godfather located in Nagtahan, Manila. And there was a time she tugged me alone to watch a movie entitled "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea". That was the only movie we watched together. Due perhaps to the offspring added in the family every two years, my mother ceased to spend some time alone with any of the older ones like me. Nevertheless, times spent with her are forever stored in my memory and treasured in my heart.
Summer of 1992 at Hinulugang Taktak, Antipolo City.
Messages of love and wisdom
Of course, it was not all good times as there could be no perfect relationship in this crazy little world. Prove me wrong. But even if I recall any of those instances when conflicts or arguments or misunderstandings occurred, never did I despise the one person who taught me the value of simplicity and compassion.
My mother is not perfect (as I am now with my own children) but somehow she helped me build happy memories in my teenage years and supported me to finish college. In short, despite all the hardships we encountered then, she made so many sacrifices for me which I would be thankful for as long as I live. Although we live far apart from each other now she never fail to send me text messages of love and wisdom.
June 23, 1995. My mother signing our Marriage Contract.
A Daughter's Wish
We are not accustomed in saying "I love you" even in text messages for those words are often spoken without context. What matters most is how you show your gratitude to your mother, not only on Mother's Day, but in any day of the year.
But since Filipinos will celebrate Mother's Day tomorrow (May 12, 2013), this is the opportune time for me--as a daughter--to wish for my mother's well-being and thank her for all the favors she had done for me. "Masayang Araw ng Mga Nanay"
As to all the mothers in the whole world, whatever your race and religion is, who showered unconditional love and concern to their offspring: HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!
And to all other mothers who abandoned their child, may you find your redemption. You threw away the chance to fulfill the very essence of a woman--motherhood.