This post was written on Sunday (October 8, 2017) onboard M/V Filipinas Cebu of Cokaliong Shipping Lines sailing from Surigao City to Cebu.
In the last three months, it had been impossible to find time for outside-of-the house date nights. Jeff and I have been quite lazy to drag our exhausted selves to a restaurant and eat a decent meal consisting of soup, salad and steak without being interrupted by a mutant who needs more meat on his plate or a princess who wants more juice in her cup.
We’ve settled with watching movies on Jeff’s laptop. The closest thing we had to a lunch date was a quick bite at Chowking because I didn’t have breakfast and it was 11:45 a.m. and I was already dizzy and pale on my way to work.
Jeff told me to sit down and eat wonton noodle soup and some steamed kangkong. When the color came back to my face, I rushed to the nearest taxi stand to get to my next appointment of the day.
I spent little time with the children and that makes me feel very guilty. Guilt to a point where tears fall from my eyes as I write this while seated on a couch inside the cleanest and most comfortable lounge of a passenger ship in the Philippines.
I just spent my weekend away from Jeff and the mutants for a work trip. Not that I was forced to go. I chose to leave because the coverage intrigued me. I needed to find out. I love my job. Coverages like this create new experiences and fuel this journalist’s curiosity, to find something relevant in the ordinary and mundane events, to seek for stories outside Cebu.
But I am a mother and as a mother, nature already endowed me the instinct to look out for my cubs. My cubs are not here so here I am, a sobbing Mama trying to calm down herself so she won’t embarrass herself and disturb oher people in this lounge.
People call me “amazing” because I juggle a lot of personal and professional responsibilities. I shake my head every single time I hear this word or words synonymous to this one. They do not know what happens at home. They do not know how much sleep I get. They do not know what I had to give up to accomplish one task.
Every single day is a struggle to leave the house as my Jeff Junior literally asks me to stay at home and play with him.
His words: “No Mom! Stop leaving! Stay and play.”
That’s the two-year-old cutie pie right there. Don’t ask me about the lecture given by the four-year-old twins.
I love how things are turning out though.
Nick is completely potty trained! Thank you Ate Joy for stopping me from buying pull ups and let them wear undies so they can practice sitting on the toilet and become big kids who can poop and pee in the toilet.
Toni is almost there. She had a few accidents which we correct by calmly telling her that the toilet is the place for poop and pee.
For our unica hija, I have to overdose myself with a natural drug called patience.
JJ is two and is still wearing diapers. He is now seating on the toilet too because of Nick’s example.The cutie pie likes to do what Manoy (older brother) does.
To be honest, I have to catch up with several modules in graduate school. I AM horribly late and I don’t even know why I am writing this blog entry before my academic report. But…oh well!
Jeff came back from what he describes as a “very successful two-week trip” in Beijing, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. I know how much he loves being in these places, meeting and talking to people. He had a different aura when he came back from that trip.
What I love most about my relationship with Jeff is the respect and space we give each other to grow professionally.
I am not afraid to excel and be the best version of myself because my husband is not an insecure man. He readily drops whatever he is doing when I need him to look after the kids because I have huge project deadline to beat or when I have to travel for work.
We have a general agreement that if one parent travels either for work or pleasure, the other parent should stay. The only exception to this rule is when we take our annual couple trip. This is when we call in reinforcements: family members and friends to help Ate Joy take care of the children while we’re away. This is why there are more people at home when Jeff and I travel together.
One thing Jeff and I agree on is not to delegate the parenting task to Ate Joy.
It’s called PARENTing for a reason.
Being parents to Nicholas, Antoinette and Jeff Junior is not a walk in the park. I used to wish it was, but not anymore. Because if that were the case, the only place we will be discovering is just the park. We won’t be able to explore markets, museums, train stations and mountains.
It’s now 11:30 in the evening.
My eyes are telling me it’s time to close the lid and head to the direction of a place called “bed.”
This ship’s second officer just entered the lounge. He said the ship will reach Cebu at around 3:00 a.m.
I’m going to be home soon.