My mom never gave me advice, and I am all the better for it

Note: This is a Facebook status I made during mother’s day

My mom never gave me advice, and I am all the better for it. When I was young, I remember looking at my closet and asking my mom to help me pick what dress I should wear. She refused and said that I should be the one to choose. I resented her for it because she was making my life harder. Then, I found out about my classmates who were forced into itchy dresses.

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Someday I have to write about lola’s death

When lola died, I couldn’t even write a Facebook post. I posted a photo of her, and I don’t know what status I placed with it. I don’t know if I even wrote “I’ll miss you.” It was like I couldn’t write anything that was an acknowledgement of what happened.

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Jeremy the Little Indian Giver

When my cousin Jeremy was really young, probably like 5 years old or something, he befriended our maid’s little son in the province. Jeremy’s mother, Tita Gia, just bought him lots of cheap plastic toys from the market, and a couple of torotot hats for New Year. For some sort of reason, Jeremy started giving all his toys and hats to the other kid. He was like Ito sa iyo na ito, ito pa. We were all surprised. Naks naman si Jeremy, mapagbigay, we all said, quite amused.

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Childhood Game: Taguan Mo Si Earl

What was the weirdest childhood game that you invented? Mine was Taguan Mo Si Earl. Actually, I don’t remember if I was the one who came up with it, but someone did. This game was a new take on hide and seek, but instead of having kids hide while one person tried to discover their hiding places, this was a targeted attempt to hide from my cousin Earl.

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Painting an Old Woman

Note: This was an assignment for our non-fiction class. We had to make a profile of a person, and I decided to interview my lola.

My lola sat on her narra bed as I fished for my small notebook from my messy handbag. She was dressed in a flowy duster dyed in immaculate blue. Her face was lined with eighty-five years of creases and sprinkled with tiny dark specks that looked like Jackson Pollock splatters if he used tilamsk ng mantika. All of those markings were mere cobwebs–concealing, yet never fully erasing her refined beauty.

On the wall behind her bed hung a painting of an old woman whose back was turned from us, looking far into the wavy horizon of cobalt blue and deep sea green. The painting is entitled “Nagmumuni-muni is Inang“. My lola beams as she tells me that this painting was made for her by a famous painter named Edgar “Egai” Talusan Fernandez.

When I was younger I thought lola posed for this painting because the painting looked like her. The woman’s face could not be seen in the painting, but even so, I still thought she looked like lola because the painting completely captured lola’s aura. It turns out that this was painted when lola was still twenty years old. The painter was able to accurately predict what lola would wear, feel, and look like in her old age.

Lola says “Siguro nung pinipinta ito in Egai, iniisip niya na ganito ako pag tanda ko.” My Tita Delit does not like the painting, she thinks that it is sad. Lola says that “pagmumuni-muni” does not necessarily mean sad, it can mean that one is contemplating. “Depende talaga kung paano mo tignan ang isang bagay. Interpretasyon niya un, pero sa akin, hindi malungkot ang pininta ni Egai.

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