Monday, July 6, 2009

Part Two: Carry on as if nothing really matters...

One of mom's last days working at Christ Hospital.

I think many mothers often display two different qualities. Sometimes, and, usually, most of the time, it's only one of these attributes that are immediately visible. There's the motherly attitude displayed when she's trying to do some parenting, and then there's the part of her that shows when she does something for fun. It's difficult to explain, but it's easy to relate to.

My mom, not unlike any other Filipino mother, enjoys kareoke. It's annoying when I'm trying to work on something (it doesn't sound wonderful, either), but she enjoys singing. That's what matters most, since she doesn't have much time to do something she wants. I try not to bother her when she's in the middle of a song, just like I try not to interrupt a song I'm listening to, or when someone's in the middle of a perfect streak in Rock Band (or something).

While more approachable than my dad, my mother is sweet and helpful whenever I try to talk to her about something, however there's kind of a culture clash when I do try to get some advice from her. Well, there'a culture clash and a language barrier (sometimes).

For example, early in June this year, my family just finished moving into the last apartment we'll move into together. I was having a hard time dealing with this sudden realization, along with the announcements that they would be flying out to Arizona by early July. For the following three weeks after the move, I would have a hard time doing anything: going to work, waking up, cleaning my room, unpacking, etc. When waking up for work in the mornings, not only was I not thrilled to be awake so early (I never am), I was, and I hate to say it, crying at the thought of being alone. It was hard not to think about it throughout the whole month at work, because I would be solitary during walks. The feeling would, or could, evaporate rather quickly, since there were people around, friends or co-workers, to help me take my mind off it.

Anyway, it was the last week of June, I was in the kitchen getting ready to go to the gym, or something, when my mom asked me why I wasn't flying to Arizona with them to help establish certain things like school for Jonar and Noel, and other things. I couldn't really answer her. I started to choke up as she kept asking and I walked into the bathroom. I guess the mistake I made when entering the bathroom to wash my face, was not closing the door. When I finished washing my face, I just sat on the edge of the tub, and I couldn't help but let it out. It was one tear at first, then it kind of flooded.

My mother passed by the bathroom, then quickly realized I wasn't right. I was trying to hide the fact that I wasn't okay by just staring at the floor, but my mother's my mother and she was persistent.

I told her that I was afraid that Noel and Jonar would think I was abandoning them. I told her that I wasn't worried about school. I wasn't worried about my financial situation. I wasn't worried about much else. I was mostly worried about my brothers, their development, and how they would adjust to life in an exurb community. How would Jonar do in his new school? How hard will college hit Noel?

I was concerned for my mom and dad, too, because they also have to adjust to life in Arizona. They don't have jobs waiting for them there.

My mom and I discussed a lot of things, ranging from my dad to my brothers to school and how hard it is to live alone, but I came out of that conversation feeling a lot better. Since talking to her in my bathroom, the breakdowns are few and far between compared to most of June.

That's the one thing I can depend on my mom for. I usually feel better and I help her feel like a person for giving her someone to talk to.

Except, our conversations, when they do happen, don't usually consist of her pulling my teeth to find out what's going on.

It's more her talking about her day, what bothers her about my dad sometimes, or that I should talk to my brother about being more responsible.

All I know is, it's nice to know she cares, since all I hear, when I'm in the apartment, from her or my dad is "Did you eat?"

It's a Filipino thing.

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