Friday, March 7, 2008

For my mother on her 48th birthday

My Mom evolves. Papaleng introduced her to me as HITLER and then, one fine day, he started calling her SADDAM. When 911 hit, she was christened as BIN LADEN and if Papaleng is in his sweet mood for the day, she will be called OSAMA (at least, there's the hint of MA in it).

She can make the sun rise in West and make it set in East. She unbelievably transforms a blue towel to green at her own will (still wouldn't change her decision even if the four of us were saying it's really blue). Her idea of fun is putting alcohol on your bleeding wound. The more you squirm in pain, the more fulfilled she is in her motherhood. She is a university undergrad but has earned her degree of being a "doctor mom," thanks to Papaleng. She pisses you till you freak out. Trying to back off won't do you any good, because she will follow you around the house wherever you go until she really, really gets into your nerves provoking you to your limits. When finally you can't hold it anymore and succumbed into her irate sarcastic fits causing you to retaliate and answer back, she could be so fierce and being slapped is not far from happening. Euphemism is not common to her as well as constructive criticisms. She is so fortunate that Papaleng has been blessed to have the virtue of patience. Every word that comes out of her mouth is like a diamond. It's precious, it's sharp, it cuts, it's priceless. Lucky us, she never fails to reach her quota of 40,000 words per day regardless of the weather. Her senses are undeniably, tried-and-tested keen. Inside her room on the second level of our house, she can instantly smell if Papaleng lights a mosquito coil at the first level of our house. She is allergic to "katol." You can never keep a secret from her. She has a way of finding it even in the most absurd way you can think of. Sometimes, you would even think it's only a product of her imagination. She is a workaholic. She gives orders to everybody. She is a genius. She knows all our sizes, from head to toe. She knows all our likes and dislikes. She has a nose for the cheap but really, really good stuff. She is a handyman. She was a stage mom for my almost-singer sister. She is street wise. She is tricky. She is foxy. She can con you if she wants but she'll never let you con her. She is a banker. Her emotions are not transparent. She is always brave. Her ways of discipline are pretty fascinating. One time, she ditched my young brother at Metropolis Mall and let him suffer finding his own way home because he was throwing tantrums at her. Oh my, I wouldn't have the heart to do that to my one and only brother, the favorite of all. Just picturing the usual scene at that mall (reported to have frequent incidents of holdups), the confusion with the pedestrians, jeepneys and buses cutting everywhere ... and yet, my mom had the courage to let my young brother experience those for the first time, just because she got annoyed with his tantrums. You should've seen the mixed expressions in her face when my brother was retelling his story to us how he was able to get home. I was amused with her on that one. She cares for you when you're sick in bed. She is a gourmet chef. She cooks the best spaghetti in the whole wide world. She can even make a "pritong galunggong" taste like it came from a fine dining restaurant. She can turn the not-so-popular, makes-you-wanna-puke, "buro" edible and amiable to the taste you would actually take second servings. She was able to transform a meat lover like Papaleng to a vegetarian-eating ampalaya and other foods that need modified taste buds for you to enjoy them. With ladles and pots, she makes ordinary dishes turn into something quite extraordinary with aftertaste that lingers like your first kiss. You gotta give her the credit and respect when it comes to kitchen matters. She deserves every inch of it. I just have to tip my hat on her on that. Every night before she goes to bed, you can hear her mutter words under her breath. She always has the might to talk to God no matter how tiring the day for her is. She is a picture of a prayerful woman. She is the totality of an unabridged version of Merriam Webster Dictionary. So concise yet difficult to comprehend all at once.

Her hand may not be gentle, her crown may be stubborn, her fist may be as iron, her thoughts may not be explicable, her insights and judgments may not be fair, but she will always be the best mom in the world for me. I love her. She's a fighter. She's a warrior. You can never break her. She has had so much in her hands but she never gave up and is battling still. Whatever I have become right now and what I will ever be is all because of what she is to me.

Happy Birthday, Mamarose ! I miss you a lot ! I love you so much. May our dear Lord bless and keep you. See you soon!


  1. Ahh, so papaleng is your dad and doctormom is your mom. They are good freinds of mine online. I am also a mom so I understand mamarose. This is a great tribute to your mom. She should be very proud of you too.

  2. :) great it...your mom is one woman you wouldnt want to be on the other side of the road, youd want her to stand next to you :)

  3. thanks for the comments, MJPatrick and ate Mich :)

  4. What a beautiful tribute from a loving daughter!

    Same pala names ng mga Mama Dearies natin, KM ;-)

  5. @ Lainy, thanks dear! and hindi lang mudra natin ang same name, pati tayo ;)

  6. Happy Birthday Tita!


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