IF YOU Precious Reader are like me, there have been few constants in your life. Our postmodern, post Industrial and Social Media-oriented age trains us to embrace change, meet change head-on, and discard the old ways in favor of the unknown, untried, untested and new, as long as the latter has the requisite likes, reposts, or retweets.
I’m no stranger to trying new things, but being a middle-aged, baby boomer, child of the 70’s, I’m afraid of anything shiny, bluetooth-accessible, and assembled best via YouTube tutorials. It’s a hazard of reality that I have to be friendly to user-friendly, cuz it’s not always that friendly, if you know what I mean.
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Comfortably old, comfortably, classic and comfortably never-changing for me (and I’m confident for my 4 other bros) is a surprisingly agile, sharp and canny woman still running her own business in Paco Manila, the old country.
She grew up with an absentee father and a mother always needing help with her three siblings, so she had to grow up right away and become first, a second mother, and then a substitute father to the rest of her brood. No surprise then, that she has such a strong personality, a subtlety better suited to a 14-wheeler, and a heart bigger than life itself.
She is the one constant in my life. If ever I have to call home, she is the first person I think of calling. If ever I’m in trouble, and believe me I’ve been there lots of times, she’s the first person I know who’ll bail me out, although not without the required sabon and scolding. I know I’m too old to still get myself in stupid situations, but no one is ever too old to run to their mothers for help.
We’re not lovey-dovey close, the way many offspring are to their mother. Her generation, the way she was (or wasn’t) brought up, and her basic personality doesn’t allow that. But I like to think that she loves me to bits, that way I do her.
After all, I think I’ve said before elsewhere that one of the other-worldly abilities of mothers, especially those with large broods, is that she can make you feel extra-special, alone among others. Later, you learn when comparing notes that she made each of you feel the same way.
In this world, mothers are alone doing that, and Mom is no exception.
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This year’s Mother’s Day is unusual. My mother is somewhere in Europe, on the pilgrimage of her life with her church group, to visit Rome, the Vatican, and hopefully, Pope Francis. A fleeting glance and a general blessing will be enough for her. As a bonus, son Panganay, working in UK, will be commuting via Eurail just to meet her. It will be a good reunion.
I won’t be able to call or text her. Nonetheless it’s a minor wrinkle for me, much less for her. She deserves this trip and everything, after all her years as a mother, and otherwise.
Happy Mother’s Day Mom! I love you always! From all of us who do.
Thanks for reading everyone!