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Monday, July 14, 2008

On Parenting

It has been a thought that someday I will be a parent. At my age of 27 I think I should start thinking about it and the hardship that comes with it. I don’t have children of my own yet nor am I married, but though I’m not yet there I have experienced the pain of being a parent. Yes there are joys of being a parent but let us not forget also the hurts that every parent has gone through, the same aches we gave our parents will also be experience…

When my father died the burden of overseeing some of my siblings came to me. I was already working then together with my sister that came after me in Manila. First it was more of a sibling quarrels. Sometimes we argue about our share in the rent and food and utilities. But then the family’s youngest girl came to study college followed by our second to the youngest boy. I am now the guardian of these two students and since we are somewhat on our own I and my sister shouldered all our expenses…except for the tuition of these two. It was ok at first but there were times when we quarrel. Sometimes my little sister complains because she always does the cooking or if I am strict on the budget for our weekly grocery. There was a point that my sister wants to buy a sofa which I disagreed due to the limited space of the apartment and still she insists that she buy. Then some old arguments come and being the eldest it hurts to see a younger sibling talk back to you…just like any other parent would feel. You wanted to make sure everything is covered or you just wanted to make sure that no waste of money so that when hard times comes you won’t have a hard time but she still insist on it. As if your decision as a parent was not respected and that you are even blamed for other issues. That’s how I felt. I stood there as their parent and it hurts to be not followed….the same way our parents could have felt when we are hard headed.

There are also times when our second youngest boy didn’t come home without any message that he won’t be home. I felt the worry each mom or dad would feel when their son or daughter is not yet home on the set time without any phone call or message that she or he would be late. And when they come and you begin to question where he went or spend the night he or she would just answer that he or she is old enough to take care of himself. And we will argue why he or she haven’t even sent a text message to inform us of his or her where abouts.

Another instance of pain a parent would feel is that when there very own child say “I hate you.” It happened to me already. My nephew who I have to look after once said that to me. I was there to look after him and I was helping him on his assignments. I could understand that kids just wanted to play but in came to the point that I have to force unto him the importance of study thus I have to stop him from playing and kinda raise my voice. He did stop playing but you can see in his behavior the anger thus when I gave him a break and ask him why he’s acting up he blurted it out. Those three words are painful especially when it comes from someone you love and care for. I tried to contain myself not to show emotion so that he wont think that I can be convince to let him just play. I went out for a while sat down and begun to think and then I cried for a moment. I felt the pain.

Sometimes I ponder when my own son or daughter would say that to me. How will I handle it or how will I face it. It makes me wonder how many pains each parent has to bear, hearing those words from a person they have created. From their own flesh saying those three words. Maybe the joys of being a parent outweigh the pain of being a parent. Maybe as time goes by they are so use to up already that it means nothing anymore when their child would say it to them.

Lately I was able to see my old college/crush’s Friendster account. She put her daughter’s picture. Her daughter is in a uniform probably in her kindergarten. I kinda smiled and emailed her commenting her that she has a cute baby. I also joke that most of our former college classmates are already married and have children of their own and I’m the only one left behind. Maybe that is how life is. We start to be children then we grow old to be parents. When we become parents we then realize the hardship our parents went through just to raise us. Maybe it’s my turn now to become a parent, a real parent. I know it would be hard but if in case I am able to convince this girl I have interest in will soon as my married friend said “ join the crazy bandwagon” of married people. Then we will start to be parents having heartaches and headaches with our children.

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