Thursday, May 26, 2011

Fringe Benefit

Salary is no doubt an essential consideration when accepting a job. This, for the majority, makes waking up early every morning and dealing with all the stress worth it. Come payday, employees have a bright smile plastered across their faces, feeling all compensated and fulfilled.

Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for myself.

For a hundred times over, I’ve heard people speculate that I am getting wealthier what with all the overtime work hours. FYI, people, I don’t get paid for the actual hours I worked. My salary doesn’t even measure up to that of a call center agent. They receive night differential bonuses when given an odd shift while I, on the other hand, don’t receive any benefit whatsoever for working OVERNIGHT. Add to that the fact that I have to endure forcing my brain to function in an AC-less room! (Just because air conditioners are switched off right after 5:30pm. Buti pa sila they can rest! Ack!) The feeling of discomfort is enough to pass it up as TORTURE! Desk fans are suddenly eyed as treasures. You grab one within your reach, without consideration to whoever is the owner. Okay, I have to stop right here before this turns into a messy rant box.

So why am I, after almost 2 years, still here? Why do I willingly subject myself to such, for lack of a better term, exploitation? Believe me, I’ve asked myself a thousand times only to end up with the same response, which I can state in less than 7 words, but this time, I'd rather let these pictures share the answer:

Half of the gang in a spur-of-the-moment photoshoot

L-R: Tin, Myself, Eloisah sans Ronnie (the photographer), Lance and Mae

You can flash that overflowing-with-zero pay slip of yours and I’ll slap you with these pictures, while drooling over your moolah, of course. But hey, we are too young and too careless to seriously mind about the income we are foregoing today in turn of our poor man’s salary. Our hearts are still contented with the fringe benefit we get from rounds of tummy-aching laughters, comforting and not-so-comforting words care of our brutal honesty and just about every other amazing thing a friendship offers.

You see, we are a bunch of clueless yuppies who are yet to find our true calling in life. For the mean time, we enjoy being slaves to this grueling job of ours, offering sweat and tears for the satisfaction of our dear gods. We complain, oh we do a lot of that; we are a bunch of babbling prisoners. But as long as the metal ball and chain strapped on our feet is the FRIENDSHIP that has naturally blossomed throughout the years, we will remain as the babbling/crabby/HAPPY prisoners that we are today.

Cheers to this friendship!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Litol Kiddos No More

There is that stained scrapbook picture, or a silly remark from a friend recounting old times. Sometimes, it comes from seeing a memento you’ve kept through the years. Regardless of form, whenever something that reminds you of age appears, it hits you at the softest spot. And you know there is nowhere to go but down. Well, down the memory lane, that is.

In my case, what has been dragging me to accept the harsh reality that I am not getting any younger are my youngest cousins. You see, they just live next door but whenever I see them, I still get a little surprised on how fast they grow up, and, needless to say, how fast I grow old.

Alyza and Alyna

I held them all in my arms, those 3 angels, when they were so small you think the smallest movement could break their bones. The summer afternoons after Alyza, the eldest, was born, I spent mostly at their house. I relentlessly bug her yaya to teach me how to carry a baby. I was the youngest in our family so I was terribly excited to have a little person I can take care of.

While they were growing up, I became their constant playmate, the ultimate spoiler. I would buy them gifts for no reason other than wanting to be the favorite ate. And I succeeded in being the one, if I may say. They would storm into my room, make a mess of my bed and I wouldn’t get the least irritated. The 2 girls would watch HSM on Disney channel in my room for a hundred times and the little boy, little may not be a fitting term as you would notice in the picture, wouldn’t complain as long as he had food to munch on.

These days, I get home, walk inside the house after a long day and hear no footsteps marching behind me. I don’t hear little voices asking me if I have work the next day every single night, as if it’s possible for them to hear a ‘No’. And, their reactions, the constant bugging for me to spill the truth of just going out for dates and not working whenever I leave on Saturdays, sometimes Sundays, their naivety of not being able to fathom the idea that one has to work (or simply do anything) on weekends, are priceless.

I bid farewell to my three angels as they migrated with their mom to Canada. I knew long before about their plans of moving but I guess I never let it fully sink in. I cried the day they left. I cried a couple more times the days after that. More than the fact that I’ll miss them, it is the worrying that gets to me the most. They are with their mom, I know. But it’s still different when they are around for me to look after. I feel helpless and, to an extent, I felt they didn’t need their Ate, anymore.

I already miss them; those three little people who annoyingly follow me around the house, who broke all those coffee mugs, who tore the cover of our magazines, who ate breakfast and heard the mass with us every Sunday, who, for years, had been causing all the wonderful chaos in our house. This year would certainly be different and somehow lonely, what with the children-less Christmas and holidays. It would be a heart-rending adjustment. I guess I’ll just have to save for round trip CA tickets! ASAP!

One of the many times I splurged in feeding these kids' monster tummies!

He would certainly pass as my youngest brother, right? (Taken last Christmas)

Oh, and thank God for Skype.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Because it's her day...

Today is Mothers’ Day and I can’t help but recall the night I shared an amazing conversation with my mom.

‘Your dad and I got secretly married’, she told me some ten years ago, ‘10 months before our actual church wedding.’ I was shocked, partly since I never knew anyone would stop had they wanted to get married anytime so there wasn’t a need to hide it, but mostly because the most responsible person I know just confessed that she once acted irresponsibly and in what could have been the biggest mistake of her life, at that! She went on telling the whole story and I ended up having a bestfriend.

From that conversation on, I knew my mom would be the person I can run to for anything. I knew that past her protective core, she can and will understand my naivety and vulnerability. She will never judge. She will get mad. Yes, she will do a lot of the nagging, but never will she judge. Because take all the negative things together and she’ll still find her way to the good intentions placed at the bottom of my heart. And for mothers, those are always good enough.

Today is Mothers’ Day and I can enumerate all the things you do for me every single day, ever since God knows when, but that would be too long a list. I’ll just pick the most important one:

More than caring for and loving me, thank you for KNOWING me. We may not have a perfect relationship but we have one. And I don’t think every mother-daughter pair can say that. But because of your amazing ways of balancing discipline and compassion, liberty and guidance, selflessness and distance, we have built a connection this strong. I have no idea how you do it and I look forward to the day you’ll be guiding me when it’s my finally turn. Because if I would be half the mom you are to me, my kids will be more than okay.

Happy Mothers’ Day! I love you.


‘Happy' cannot possibly cover how you truly make me feel.

See that smile? It’s neither picture perfect nor primary photo worthy. But that’s beside the point. That smile right there is my truest smile; the I-can’t-help-but-crinkle-my-nose grin that radiates overflowing joy.

Thank you for being the person who does the biggest and smallest of things to paint that kind of smile on my face. Your love is a rarity.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to Posts [Atom]