boo!

i am sleepy. but there’s nothing surprising about that, i am always sleepy. my normal state is somewhere between smothered in just enough cotton to still breathe and feel emotion and floating above everybody else just low enough to still catch the gist of whatever’s happening.

so far it’s worked for me: i don’t get too affected by everyday bs and therefore carry minimal baggage around. admittedly, there were times when i’ve wondered how it would be like to actually be one hundred percent present in every situation i was in, to feel happiness and sadness and anger without mental cloudiness.

i tried to get more sleep, i took vitamins, i pinched myself. sometimes it worked, most of the time it didn’t. life went on.

lately though, i’ve been feeling the urge to nudge my brain into full wakefulness again and so i decided to take on the sangobion challenge and see if it works. the tvc promised results in 15 days. we shall see.

sangobian challenge

day 1 of 15

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the nanny horror story

and so the nanny has gone, leaving the kid with me and alvin. the universe’s version of saying haha, i suppose.

let me backtrack. sometime in july, the nanny came to me, saying she had to leave in september because her father was sick and her mother needed help during harvest season. i asked if she would be coming back. she said yes because she wanted to finish her als (alternative learning system) classes (she goes every saturday), which will end in november. i said okay.

then a couple of weeks later, she came again, saying she wouldn’t have to leave because her brother was going to go and stay home from august to january. i said okay.

august came. a-ko stayed with us for two weeks because she had her cataract surgery, which meant she stayed home with roque and the nanny on weekdays. at around this time, we noticed the nanny being on the phone more often than usual, and we learned from a-ko that she apparently had a new suitor, someone she met through facebook.

now, while i’m not one to meddle in someone’s lovelife unless invited to, i would understandably be concerned if you were on the phone most of the day everyday, because then when would you have time to take care of my kid? so alvin spoke to her about it. not harshly, if i may objectively say so, it was all kind of casual, while she was helping him get dinner ready.

then she got mad at a-ko for supposedly tattling on her. which got me mad because how dare she think that a-ko would put her feelings above my son’s safety. and so i spoke to her about it. as nicely and as motherly as i could.

a week later she said she’s decided to go home. she would be leaving at the end of the month, a week away. i asked if it was for good. she said she didn’t know. after i pressed her for a more definite answer, she admitted that no, she would not be coming back. i said okay.

a day later, a sunday morning, she came from her room, sat behind the sofa where i sat watching tv, said she got a call the night before from her sister, who told her that their father had suddenly died, then promptly burst into tears.

she left the following afternoon with all her belongings, a full month’s salary and a little extra from us to help with the funeral expenses. we brought her to where her brother was supposed to pick her up so they could make the trip home together.

fast forward a week. the nanny’s cousin used to work for alvin’s brother’s family and so are friends with the other help at their family’s compound. when they texted her to send their condolences for her uncle’s death, she messaged back, ‘who died?!’

and the whole story started to unfold. the nanny, all sixteen years of her, eloped. i think i was more confused than anything. confused about the need to lie about her father dying when we had already agreed on her leaving in a week’s time. then i became angry. we treated her well during the time she stayed with us. she never went hungry, we were loose with day-offs, her workload was light. i even washed the little ingrate’s clothes, dammit.

grr.

so the last couple of weeks have been spent coping. i bring roque with me to work, alvin and i split the chores when we get home. it’s been really tiring, but kind of liberating too, to not have a stranger in our home, to not have to think of anybody else’s welfare apart from my family’s, to be able to do and say anything in my own home without worrying about somebody else seeing or hearing.

i’ve never been comfortable with getting help, and this whole drama has made me even more wary. so we’re going to try it this way for a while and see if we can manage. i’ll work from home when i can, and roque will still spend a couple of days a week at his grandma’s which will give alvin and i time to catch our breath.

wish us luck.


simpler times

let me start with the disclaimer that i love my son. i love him with such intensity tears literally fill my eyes when i try to put what i feel into words because my heart is unable to contain the emotion.

i am grateful every day that i am his mother.

given that, today, mother’s day, i miss *not* being a mother.

i miss not being responsible for another life. i miss the luxury of dawdling over dinner with friends after work. i miss having adult conversations.

i miss watching movies with my husband. i miss eating a meal *with* him (no, being at the table at the same time while one of you feeds the kid does not count). i miss actually having sex when the urge hits.

i miss sleeping in. i miss sleeping through the night. i miss going to bed when i want to.

most of all, i miss not being so emotionally full all the time.

i miss not wanting to burst into tears every time i see a homeless child. i miss not wanting to commit murder each time i hear about an irresponsible parent. i miss not being consumed by paralysing fear when i think about not being able to provide for my son.

i miss not needing to hurry home because my heart hurts to be away from him. i miss not having my happiness hinge on hearing his delighted laughter.

i miss not needing to feel his weight on my arms, to breathe in his scent, to constantly reassure myself that he is real.

i love my son with such force it reduces me to a helpless ball. but i miss.


roque’s birthday weekend

roque turned one over the weekend and because alvin and i wanted to get as far away from the horrors of planning a children’s party as possible, we tempted a-ko, mommy and tanya with visions of pine trees and escaped to cool baguio.

in between braving tourist-filled mine’s view park, hoarding fresh vegetables at la trinidad and stuffing ourselves silly with yummy, yummy(!) food all over baguio city, we celebrated roque’s birthday with a family photo session at fog photo, the highlight of which was a delightfully messy cake smash. 🙂

 

cake smash 01

cake smash 02

cake smash 03

cake smash 04

cake smash 05

bubbles 02

bubbles 01

family 01

family 02

family 03

family 04

photos by adrian dungo – http://adriandungo.weebly.com/

fog photo – https://www.facebook.com/FogPhoto

custom cake by vizco’s restaurant and cake shop – https://www.facebook.com/VizcosRestaurantandCakeShop


on holiday

it’s been three days since our supposedly relaxing 4-day beach holiday and I’m still recovering from exhaustion.

I’ve been looking forward to this trip with friends for months. I had visions of lying on white sand, of blue skies overhead, of catching up with friends. it would be roque’s first major out-of-town trip and I was excited to watch him discover and explore sand. I imagined him playing by the water, absorbed by the wonder of the waves, the sun gently turning his fair skin golden brown.

well, let me tell you, none of these things happened. none.

the resort we stayed at had a small strip of white sand right at its doorstep which appeared for a few hours each day during low tide, and it was all the sand I ever saw during those four days. you can bet I never once laid down on it.

other than traveling and staying in one house together, our friends and my family might as well have gone on two very different trips.

they went island hopping everyday and did all the things I looked forward to –clear skies, white sand, blue water.

alvin and I, on the other hand, stayed at the resort and made sure our 10-month-old took his naps and drank his milk, which sounds very responsible and commendable until you’re the one left behind while everyone else worked on their tan.

and nappies, we changed a lot of nappies.

so, no, it wasn’t the best holiday I’ve gone on, thank you for asking.

the little boy, on the other hand, seemed to have had a good time.

davao 01

multiple firsts: first plane ride, first bus ride, first roro trip. he handled the long travel from manila to samal island really well, especially considering we had to be at the airport at 230am for our 405am flight.

davao 02

the protests came when we picked him up to leave.

davao 03

he wasn’t lacking in attention and he knew it.

davao 04

he discovered stairs and doors. my back wasn’t amused at these discoveries.

davao 05

happy!

davao 06

peekaboo!

davao 07

one plus one makes three!

captain hook’s red parrot inn. kaputian, samal island – http://www.redparrotinn.com/

bahay ni tuding. davao city – http://www.bahaynituding.com/


the reupholstery project

alvin and i bought a couple of dining room chairs early this year. mainly because we realized we didn’t have regular-sized chairs and i was hugely pregnant, which made perching on the bar stools we were using as dining room chairs slightly difficult. we found some sturdy, folding ones on sale at s&r and grabbed them. they were very comfy.

unfortunately, they were beige.

i’ve been itching to reupholster them since day one but what with waddling, giving birth and taking care of a helpless baby, it was hard to find time to do it.

last night, because it was alvin’s birthday (really, his birthday had nothing to do with it), we finally hunkered down and transformed the icky beige seats into something more fun, and lucky you get to have a blow by blow. 😀

01

get a couple of chairs with drab-colored seat cushions.

02

unscrew the cushion from the frame.

03

find fabric you really like and cut it a few inches wider than your cushion on all sides. ours was canvas.

04

staple the fabric onto the back of the cushion. (we couldn’t find flat staple wires so we made do with cable staple wires and just pounded them flat, haha)

05

screw the cushion back on.

06

ta-daaa! instant new chairs!

07a

before and after.


roque meets the sea

i had a bad wanderlust attack a couple of weeks ago and tito junet and tita melanie came to the rescue by lending us their beach house for the weekend.

the house was gorgeous, the food was yummy, and roque met the sea for the first time! 😀

00 the claw

the claaaw!

01 retro snacks+wine

retro snacks + wine

02 roque's stuff

roque’s overnight stuff vs alvin’s and my overnight stuff

03 first meal at tali

roque’s favorite spot in the house

04 roque

i don’t know about you but i’m going swimming!

05 house

brick kitchen counter and blue stairs

06 house

blue gas lamp

07 jingy

with and without jingy

08 house

here and there

09 house

whitewashed headboard

10 house

red sails

11 jingy and roque

jing and roque

12 food

lunch!

13 roque with daddy

the boss

14 with mommy

the sea!

15 group photo

everybody!

16 beach

roque at the beach!

17 stroller at the beach

happy!

18 elma

elma

19 green door

green door

20 roque and the water

roque meets the sea

21 with daddy

roque