This time last year, the kids were with their grandparents in Turkey. They cry every evening whenever we checked on them over the phone. They missed us and we missed them terribly. Truly, being able to provide to kids a good life while being with them physically is a great blessing nowadays.
In Philippines, it became very typical routine for family, especially OFW families to be away from kids. Kids grow up with their grandparents. Sometimes, I wonder whether this is fair for the grand parents and the kids themselves.
Our eldest, as most of us who personally know us know, grow up with her grandmother for the first three years of her life. As much as I hate to admit it, it was more of a convenience on my part. I was able to live without being a "mother" to her. Of course, I obliged my mom and sisters to upload pictures of her in the internet so I could see how she is growing up (I will be eternally grateful for my family for taking care of her while I was away.) It was not easy to leave her everytime I go home to Philippines to see her, but it was almost impossible to leave her when I experienced how it was to become a hands on mom, being physically together with my children.
I know realized that not only I gave up the right to influence her attitude in the early years of her life (which may or may not be good!) but I also missed on those little happiness everyday seeing her achieve important milestones in her growing up years. And there is a lot... a LOT of happiness everyday just being with kids, seeing their "firsts"; first smile, first words, first kick, first time falling off the bed, first time falling off anything!
While I know a lot of Filipino kids growing up with their grandchildren, on the other hand, my Western mom friends are arguing whether to leave their kids with the grandparents for one to two weeks over the summer. And most of them are hesitant to leave the kids for so many reasons I sometimes curse them for how fortunate they are for having so many alternative options not to be away from their kids while they earn horrendous amount of money - I am taking responsibility for that little lapse of insanity taking a take at a superior race; sorry!
The two situations are extreme and when you look at it ( and I have lots of times), it sometimes boil down to what every parent thinks is best for the children, considering all the constraints at hand. Most of the Filipinos abroad don't even have the opportunity to bring their kids with them, whilst they have a great need of money which they can only earn in other countries to be able to support their kids. It sucks big time that they had to be away from kids to be able to do that; such is a great sacrifice a parent would be able to bear for kids.
Other nationalities may have other constraints that I may not know but I'm sure that they do sacrifice for kids too.
Anyhow, onto my reminiscing...
These photos were taken exactly a year ago and the kids were away from us for less than two weeks and I was already going crazy! As a result, we changed our vacation plans and joined the kids as soon as we could. The feeling of being together with them is always cherished. Everyday is a blessing to be together indeed!
|teaching the kids how to cook!|
|fresh from the garden!|
|kids cooking! hahha|
|getting pro at cutting veggies!|
|now with the kofta!|
|hurry up! I am hungry!|
|breakfast al fresco during summer 2011|
Oh well, it was a great opportunity for them to learn how to cook - a skill they would never learn from their mom anyways. Sometimes, it is great to learn skills from others.
Happy Summer 2012 everyone! I hope everyone is having a blast. (As of this writing, Philippines is going through horrendous amount of rain - my thoughts and prayers are with all of my kabayans.)