It’s important that I get home by 7:30 p.m. every day to be with our girls. But nowadays, because of traffic, there are times that I get home at 8:00 p.m. (that’s the latest and I can still forgive myself for that). You see, I really value the time I spend with them each day. And when I get home, I see to it that I’m still at my “best”. I don’t want to short-change them by giving them the “tira-tira” of my time. To still be at my best with them is the least that I can do for them. I watch what they only watch on TV - Disney Junior. I laugh with them, play with them, cry with them. Weekends are spent watching a marathon of their favorite DVDs such as Barbie movies, Toy Story 1,2,3, Shrek 1,2,3, Tangled, Spongebob Squarepants and Mickey Mouse.
I took a crash course in driving and got my driver’s license. I have yet to drive myself to work, though. I still take the shuttle from office to our house. I use this time to recharge (sleep) and prepare to be with my kids. That’s almost 2 hours of travel, imagine? I am also thankful for my two neighbors, Rose and Fritzi, who I get to hitch a ride with to Makati almost every day.
Taking the public transport has never been a problem to me. I am so used to it. I’m used to walking, too, even long distances and I’m proud that I don’t catch my breath every time.
I have learned to become a handy man. I now know what kind of bulb or light to buy when Nanet, our yaya, would text me, “Ate pondido na ung ilaw sa banyo.” Just last night, the internet wasn’t working so I called PLDT and reported the problem. I tried my hand in trouble-shooting it, and alas the internet worked afterwards. No need to wait for PLDT. I would buy food for our aquarium fishes and instruct our helpers to help clean the aquarium (we used to have more than 5 fishes when husband left, now it’s down to 2 fishes). Those used to be Ronald’s concern. But, all things can be learned and I’m learning.
Every night, Ronald and I would talk via videoskype or FB video while the kids are just playing or watching in the attic. That’s how we talk to each other everyday, hindi nga lang face-to-face, pero screen-to-screen naman.
These are certain things that I can get used to as an OFW’s wife, but still there are things which I refuse to get used to, most especially when it involves emotions and feelings.
I miss how things were before. I miss our family bonding moments over food and coffee, our weekend trips to the malls, attending worship services together, movie-watching in cinemas, the Friday night dates with Babes, our free concert escapades (c/o our kumare) when we groove along with teenagers, our conversations while Babes is driving to and from work, our trips to the grocery, and most of all, I miss our times of family-togetherness. Noelle once told me when her papa left for Malaysia, “Mom, we’re not a family anymore. A family should have a papa, mama, ate Nisi, me, and baby Nala. Papa’s not here, we’re not complete.”
I believe in my heart that God not will not allow us to be “separated” for long. In the meantime, we will take this circumstance as an opportunity to deepen our faith, to grow wiser, to learn from and to love and value each other more. For we know that where each of us is at this moment, is exactly where God wants us to be. We will wait on the Lord and anticipate the best of what He has in store for us. I don’t want to miss the best just because I am settling for the good.
We surely hold on to His promise: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you," declares the Lord.
We will all be together again as a “family”. May that be here or in Malaysia, or maybe somewhere else, we just don’t know yet. All I know is that it will happen in His perfect time.