Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Stage mom feels

I am the worst kind of mother.

I did not know that today the little big man, who's not so little anymore, who just turned 13 just over a week ago, was one of the contestants in a beauty pageant in school. All the while, I thought he was preparing for a class presentation for their Buwan Ng Wika culminating activity. I even considered going to work today because my boss was hesitant in allowing me to take a leave. At the last minute though, my leave was approved. But really, all the while I thought it was just one of those routine activities that a good mother should attend for her kids. I was so wrong.

How do I describe the feeling? Years ago, I witnessed this little big man fight in his very first taekwondo competition. I had jitters. My hands trembled as I held the videocam to capture the fight. I was a newbie taekwondo parent surrounded by parents of brown- and black-belts who've been through dozens of competitions. That first competition gave him a bronze medal. He came out of it triumphant and went on to dozens more competitions with more bronzes, silvers and golds. And me? I came out even more triumphant with every medal, every fall, every tear. He had as many triumphs as defeats.

Today I was a newbie mom to a teenage son who joined a beauty/talent/intelligence contest for the first time.

It felt exactly the same thing.

I looked on child rearing not only as a work of love and duty 
but as a profession that was fully as interesting and challenging 
as any honorable profession in the world 
and one that demanded the best that I could bring to it.
~Rose Kennedy

Thursday, August 13, 2015

My 13 Thoughts on Your 13th Birthday This August 13

13. I've been a mom for 13 years now. (Who would've thought i'd get this far?)

12. This is a new chapter for you and me. Everybody says the teenage years are the most challenging for parents but the most memorable for their children. I hope we could get through this together and you arrive at your adulthood and my senior life both of us unscathed. (So help us God.)

11. I'd appreciate it if we could stay friends throughout. You did promise me when you were 4 years old that you wouldn't keep secrets from me. So let's take it from there, shall we? It's best to tell your ol' mom your joys, sorrows, triumphs, problems and I promise to be the best listener. Ever.

10. Your sister is your friend as well. I hope and pray that you nurture your relationship with her. Make her feel that she's protected and loved by her older brother. Remember that your future girlfriends will take particular note of how you treat your mother and sister.

9. Though your Dad is not physically present, know that he loves you very much. And you know you can always ask him for guidance and advice on things you cannot ask me. ('Cause he is still the best Dad in the world.)

8. Learning in school is the most important thing to do during your teenage years. It sets the foundation of how you will turn out in your adult life. You wanna be successful yeah? Study hard. It will all be worth it when the time comes and you will be thankful.

7. Independence is something you have started wanting for the past year. The more you will want it in the next years. I'm giving it to you. I give it to you and I trust that you will make sound, reasonable and  balanced decisions. I will always be here to give you advice and guidance. (Just put down your phone and talk to me.)

6. What do I always tell you? Your character is what you do when no one else sees you. Even when no one sees you, always do what is right. And kind. Pray wherever and whenever. There's no limit.

5. Your success in life will be all your doing. No one else's. You define your future. And even your present. (I mean, your now, your present. Not gift. I know what you're thinking.)

4. Don't worry about your height. You'll grow much taller than you already are. Believe me. (I know.)

3. Hugs and kisses and "I love yous' should never EVER run out. You hear me? It reassures me that I'm doing good as your mother.

2. All my promises, I will fulfill them. Not always immediately, but rest assured that I'm trying everything to keep them. I hope you fulfill yours too. 

1. Enjoy your teenage years, my son. How you will live your life at 31 will depend on how you will live your life at 13 onwards.

"There's this boy who stole my heart.
He calls me Mom."