“Joys of Motherhood” is how I call Mom. That, plus others like “Ruthie”, “Ruthless Mother”, “Mumps”, “Emma Ruth”, “MaRuth”, etc. Don’t ask why, mahabang kwento.
Not your typical mother
Growing up, I always told myself I will never be like my mom. Clarification: I never wanted to be like her. To me, she was the antithesis of the mother archetype. For one, she has always worn her hair short. E ‘di ba mothers are supposed to have long flowing hair, or have their hair tied in a bun? She also always wears a scowl on her face and has hoarse voice!
This is how moms are supposed to look like, right? Image lifted from nefariousx.blogspot.com
Mom was also far from being malambing. I remember getting sappy after watching this scene from Dumbo:
What I did after watching was I snuggled up against my mom, who was at that time reading a paperback. I was rubbing my head against her arm ala-Dumbo, and then she looked at me with her signature scowl and said, “Dewmaine ano ba ‘yan?!? Para kang pusa!”
And then there was also my issue with her fashion sense. I’ve always wanted a glamorous mom…you know, someone who’s always made-up, coiffed and dressed to a tee. Hell, I even wished my mom smoked and sported long, red nails. But she was none of that.
She was the contravida of my life, and I’d always wished I had a different mom.
Maleficent vs. Winnie Monsod
So just how bad was my mom? This bad:
Image lifted from antipinoy.com Haha, mom na mom! When Raviv saw this, he said, “Si Lola Emma!”
Yes, parang siyang si Winnie Monsod. Ang sama ‘di ba? Not that Winnie Monsod is a bad person, but, pang-Nanay ba si Winnie Monsod?!? Ask any young girl who’s a fan of fairy tales whether she’d want Winnie Monsod as a mom. I tell you, she’d prefer a Maleficent-ish mom over a Winnie Monsod-ish one.
Just like “Mareng Winnie”, my mom also speaks her mind. Loudly and hoarsely rin. Haha. Her stare can also melt anyone’s glacial veneer, and her sharp, piercing words can carve you out of the word, “Fear”. Growing up, I’d hear her peers and subordinates badmouth her (in hindsight, they may have done it on purpose…they were cowards who wanted to hurt me for Mom because they knew they’ll never have beaten Mom). Each time, I had wanted the earth to swallow me. I mean, how could I have been given such a terrible mom?!? I remember a time when I had trouble getting a school service. It was because Mom asked the driver (in her signature loud and hoarse voice, of course), “Ay kung ganyan ang singil mo ayoko na!” or something akin to that. And then that driver treated my brother and me like pariahs. Even when our helper said we wanted to avail of his service, ayaw talaga niya.
And then there’s her predisposition to peddling. When we were still living in Mindanao, she would buy shoes from Divisoria and sell it in our hometown. She would sometimes go to my school with her big plastic of paninda! Que horror ‘di ba? I was queen bee of my clique and then my mom would suddenly appear na peddler ang peg! Nacacahiya!!!
So you see, I really hated my mom. Of course I loved her, but I’d always, always wished she were far from who she was.
The Joys of Mom Being My “Motherhood”
But recently, I realized how blessed I and my brother are because our mom is mom. I realized how admirable she really is, and if I could be even half as great as she is, malaking achievement na ‘yun. Why my change of heart? Because the following hit me:
- So what if she’s not maporma? Even devoid of make-up and fancy clothes, my mom is beautiful (thus my own beauty…chos!). I’m not saying this just because she’s my mom ha. Ilong at kutis pa lang ni Motherhood, marami nang tataob na matronang naggi-greet ng “Happy FOUNDATION Day” ang mga mukha. And I appreciate the fact that she prioritized her career and her children over pagpapaganda, and that she was not kiri or malandi.
Many commented that Mom looks like Vilma Santos. 😉
- So what if she speaks her mind, loudly and hoarsely? My mom is Winnie Monsod nga ‘di ba? At least she’s not plastic. And she makes sense. Unlike other moms who speak gently, puro chismis at nonsense lang naman ang lumalabas sa bibig.
They say she’s scary and mataray but even Dad’s nieces love Mom!
- So what if she’s not pasosyal? My mom was born dirt poor, but she overcame poverty. Even though she’s not filthy rich like Janet Napoles, at least she’s not filthy like Janet Napoles. I believe that my mom’s natural leadership skills, intelligence, discipline and hard work brought her where she is right now (and yes, nakatulong ang mga sapatos galing Divisoria). So sa mga nang-iintriga sa kanya, pwede bang tumigil-tigil kayo?!? Alam naman nating lahat na magaling talaga si mom, at insecure lang kayo. Dahil marami kayong time mag-text “anonymously” sa kanya, practice-practice na lang kayong maging disciplined. At iwas na sa chismis . Doing these, baka kayanin n’yo ring magkaron ng PhD in Genetics sa UP at mag-reap ng maraming national awards. Malay n’yo lang ‘di ba? 😉 Try n’yo. (Sorry, naiinis lang ako).http://instagram.com/p/eBPjdNuYwp/
Mumps, happy birthday! I have really come to realize how blessed we are to have you in our lives. I now appreciate you more. Ang complaint ko na lang siguro talaga sa ‘yo ay hindi ka malambing. But other than that, wala na. Thank you because even though you were not artistic, at least hindi ka nag-ilusyong artistic ka…tuloy, even though our house was not pang-magazine ang peg, it was always clean. Mahirap palang mag-maintain ng bahay, na-realize ko ‘yan ngayon. Thank you rin hindi ka nagpaka-social butterfly—if so, baka napabayaan mo kami and ‘yung work mo. Thank you too for always threatening me, “’Pag nag-boyfriend-boyfriend ka at nabuntis ka akala mo tutulungan kita?” Of course I knew you’d have helped me (of course, after ng sermon), but those lectures made me aware that it is vital I get pregnant at the right time and with the right man. Randy tells me, “Ikaw ang taong pinakatakot mabuntis na nakilala ko. May asawa ka na at may pera naman, pero sobrang takot ka pa rin.” But he salutes this paranoia. 😉 Thank you too for loving my boys: Randy and Raviv. I am so proud of you—you used to make parinig na ‘wag kang asahan na maging doting lola kasi busy ka. And that ayaw mo ng batang lalaki. But seeing you with Raviv, kinain mo lahat ng sinabi mo. You’re one hell of a great mom, Motherhood.
I have so many things to thank you for, but one thing is most vital: Thank you because you’re a Christian. Whenever my Bible study group mates and I share, it is I who would always emerge as the one without any issues growing up. I would always say that we were never had financial difficulties, we lived a peaceful life, and our family is still complete (and growing). And when I said you raised us as Christians (kahit pa super imperfect Christians), they’d say, “Kaya pala. Heir ka ng pagiging Christian ng nanay mo. Kaya kahit ano’ng gawin mo, may shield ka.” It was a great revelation to me, and made perfect sense.
Truly, the fruits of your relationship with God is the best thing you’d ever given us. Happy happy birthday Mom and thank you for being you. 😉
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