Summer school

When we enrolled Mischa in Nursery for the coming school year, I was glad that the school will offer summer classes to familiarize the kids so that come June, they will be more or less adjusted to going to the idea of going to school. They would have done away with the expected crying, making habol the guardians dropping them off, and other kid-peculiar behaviors normal during first days of classes.

April 17 marked a very special day in our household. It certainly felt like we were all going to our “first day”. Being a first time mom, with a toddler on the threshold of yet another milestone, I was hard pressed in containing my excitement. The hubby and I even asked for some time off from work so we could be there for her on this momentous occasion. And while it was just “practice” school, both the hubby and I took it very seriously while the kid just went on her daily routine without a care in the world. Well maybe, except for Dora and Barney, and whether the fish has eaten.

So I got up early (truth be told I had a fitful sleep. kept on dreaming I was left behind on a field trip. lol), prepared her school bag complete with baon, and prepped her. For her, it was just like any ordinary day as I dressed her up. She was probably wondering whether it was Church or the grocery. Had a hearty breakfast then off to school we went.

I didn’t really know what to expect. As soon as we entered the school grounds, we saw that there were already a few families inside, some with kids entering school for the first time, too. Mischa was hesitant at first as the school owner and the teachers greeted her. She literally got behind mommy’s skirt, and I gently prodded her to play first. She seemed to warm up as she saw a handful of kids running around with plastic balls, and going up and down the slide. She was beginning to get her groove then, when all the kids–including kinder and prep pupils–had to go inside.

The class started off with the usual prayers and songs. There were about twenty of them all together in the room with ages ranging from three to about eight or nine. Mischa was easily the smallest, not having reached the age of three yet. And she was the most active.

All throughout the two-hour session, she just stood and ran around the room. She couldn’t be put down! I was actually at a loss if I should tell her off, or let the teacher do her thing. So I just kept quiet and watched her. She didn’t seem to care whether I was inside the room or not, but I was afraid to go out lest she comes after me. But as expected, as soon as the teacher (a stranger to her) began talking to her, she shied away from her, showed a little defiance, and ran as far as possible. She didn’t answer the questions, which I know she knows the answers to, like the colors, kinds of fruits, her name, etc. She also didn’t want to sit down when they were given a piece of paper with two apples to color. She skipped from table to table (like a supervisor, lol), and basically just did her own thing.

She finally followed suit when the teacher announced that it was time to wash their hands when it was recess time.

The class was broken down to the specific classes, and Mischa was left in a group of six Nursery students. They were given activity time outside again, and she was at her element this time.

It’s been two weeks since that first day. Mama is the one bringing her to school now. She dutifully reports that, while Mischa still could not be contained, she has began following instructions, and started joining the class songs.

Mama and I have had arguments about slowly letting Mischa go. I now find out that the grandma is having a harder time letting go of the baby in Mischa. She still insists on staying in school rather than coming back for her when school ends as the school is only four blocks away. I tell her it is about time we let her be a kid one day at a time, instead of treating her like a baby. I’m all for letting her practice independence. I don’t want her to grow up lampa, and dependent on an adult with every move she makes. But she couldn’t start learning when the adult is not ready, yet.

Or maybe I’m just jealous it is not me seeing her progress each day. It is not me she proudly runs to first whenever she gets a star. I want everyone else to let her go because I couldn’t hang on to her each day.

I am just glad she always thinks that she couldn’t have the star on her hand erased without showing it to mommy and daddy when they get home from work.

These are bittersweet moments.

In full swing

We visit our project as much as we can (which means weekends) to see how far along we are to, you know, living our dream. We have had some issues about the developer starting late, but nevertheless, we are grateful that things are moving along fine now.

During our last visit, Mischa and I stayed in the car because of the damn heat. It was just too much for us. Anyway, looking around the area, a wave of emotion just passed over me. I dunno, there was just a swell of happiness, eagerness and a kind of wistfulness as I looked at our half-finished home. I surveyed the area, and saw that construction was in full swing. In less than a year, that parcel of a land has grown from this, which I first introduced last year:

to this (pardon the blurry shot. as I said, it was taken inside the car):

It felt great looking at progress. One can see the various states of construction. Some are half-finished like ours, need only roofs, while others are just starting from scratch. The sounds of pounding, sawing, scraping are music to one’s ears as the noises mean growth. What once before was a silent, barren land, is slowly becoming a booming village. Maybe it is not just about building houses, it is more of building communities, and raising families. I imagine the sun shining brightly on all the homes built, with flowers in full bloom in gardens, kids running around, men washing cars, the faint hint of breakfast cooking, the whir of washers all around. Malapit na. I can almost taste the warm, happy air.

Barely breathing

This picture just about sums up the way I feel right now at work. I have draft posts languishing, but I couldn’t even sit down and upload pictures from our camera, let alone write a few hundred words to tell a story. I want to brag about my pre-schooler starting Nursery. Want to post pictures of how construction at our house are moving along. Want to rant about a walang kakwenta-kwentang tao at work. Want to express my thoughts on my being sent to Israel and hubby to Europe at the same time (how I want and do not want to at the same time). But I just can’t. Not right now. Words all jumbled up in my head. Plus I do not have the luxury of time.

I promise to come back soon.


Mischa had a chance to go play at one of those structured playrooms inside the malls. It was a new experience for both of us what with having to share toys and the play area. Being an only child, she is used to free play–preferring to play with “real stuff” of adults rather than her numerous toys, and has limited social skills when it comes to playing with other kids. While she sometimes sees and gets to spend time with cousins on her father’s side, these are usually big enough kids whom you can already chide gently if playing gets rough.

So it was a bit weird when you had to share space and stuff with complete strangers, especially when other kids are rough, or rude. It took several ounces of restraint to tell off kids who kept on bumping me or Mischa, or shoving us out of the way so they could go first. All of those times we were there, questions such as “where are these kids’ manners, or what are they teaching them at home” keep rolling around my head. Of course, I kept my mouth shut the whole time seeing as the kids are not mine to discipline.

On the one hand, there were nice kids, too. There was this one girl who was slightly bigger than Mischa who kept on shyly glancing at her and offering her the toys, and looked like she wanted to make friends.

I wonder what kinds of friends will my daughter keep? I hope to God she chooses well. I so felt like I was in a real parent’s shoes who wants to check out and approve/disapprove of the company she will have. It was unnerving to say the least, that I am beginning to think and having second thoughts about letting her out into the real world.

Suffice to say, it would be an understatement that Mischa enjoyed herself what with the flailing arms and legs when I had to get her away from the toys when it was time to go.

Like mother, like daughter

It’s the crack of dawn on Black Saturday, and I am wide awake as an owl. It is such an injustice to have awoken at 4:30 in the morning on a holiday when I usually cram those available sleeping hours on workdays. On the one hand, it feels great to see daddy and daughter sleeping side by side peacefully. I spent a good half an hour just watching them as their chests rise with each untroubled breath. I could do this all day, you know.

But since I have been up for some time now, I got up, went to the bathroom, tried to sleep again, got up again, turned on the TV, opened the laptop and surfed the net. And as I have been in a reflective mood the past few days, here I am trying to get stuff off my chest and writing.

So what is it that I am now reflecting on aside from how-much-deeply-in-love-I-am-with-my-daughter fixation, and how she seems to be shooting up right before my eyes? Well, I am now thinking of our likenesses aside from obvious physical resemblance. While she got her general disposition from her dad (I disown that moody, suplada, impatient, headstrong nature hehe), she still took some behavioral things and tastes from me–from habit or by nature, I really can’t tell…

…like how she runs away from cockroaches, or calls daddy at the top of her lungs
…or how she hates ampalaya, or dislikes squash
…how she loves sour, sweet and salty food
…how sharp her memory is (this is like a prelude of my being mapagtanim hehe)
…how gregarious and loud she is when surrounded by the people she knows
…how she doesn’t want to be at the center of attention, and shies away from people who ogle her too much
…how she doesn’t plunge headlong into a new activity and watches first for several times before she does it herself
…how she keeps a lot of the pain to herself and doesn’t cry when she is berated, or stumbles or falls
…how predictable she is (or maybe I just know her too well)

And in more ways than I can comprehend. I am torn between surprise and awe at how I seem to be looking at a mirror every time I look into her eyes. I am also afraid if she grows up to be like me–how I absurdly value other people’s opinion more than my own, and always turn to others for validation. I hope she comes into her own, and doesn’t take after the pushover side of me. Oh well, this isn’t about me. As I keep praying to God to guide me, and let me be the best mom I can be, I hope to have the strength to lead her the right path to goodness and happiness.

It’s quiet on the homefront

Been enjoying the last two days in the company of the two most important people in my life. I hardly dare breathe in case my happy bubble bursts. But well, I just must enjoy the hours before we all go back to reality come Easter Tuesday. Whoa, listen to me gripe. I am becoming melancholic when I should just be savoring every minute spent away from all that stress.

Anyhow, I dragged the hubby and the toddler yesterday to Sta. Clara Church in Katipunan so I could do the Way of the Cross. Haven’t done this in a really loooong time though it’s a little hard to reflect when there is a toddler very keen on running around the place. Wanted to do the rounds of Churches so I could do the Visita Iglesia at the same time but the husband was not up to it. Sayang, maybe we could do it next year. Wanted to go the Tagaytay rounds if we’re lucky.

Went to the house in Taytay. Can’t even begin to describe how I miss that place. Full of good (and bad) memories (but memories just the same). I keep on asking Mischa is she still remembers the place. She must have. I can’t believe we have been away for so long. I can almost see Mischa when she was still a baby. She learned how to sit, stand, walk, run there. Masakit talaga yung kurot sa puso. I sometimes wish we could go back. Di ko na lang alam kung papaano.

Today we stayed in, and was warmly (or rather hotly) cocooned in the brother’s condo. Played my favorite role of being Super Inday. I love that we have very little worries, and the days are carefree. It’s good to wake up, and cuddle, and tickle, and feel our three sets of tangled arms, hair, and kisses. Sigh, it seems like I am always, always praying to have more of these times. I wish we could always stay in bed like this.

Flying the coop

While this is by no means a vacation, we are temporarily leaving the good folks’ home for the Holy Week. Before, I used to love staying at my brother’s place since being there takes some chores off my hands. This time, this temporary evacuation is more of a precautionary measure since the grandfather contracted shingles. We have been bringing the kid to work for the past two days now. I don’t really want to leave home at the moment–was too lazy to pack our things (too tedious!). At the same time, I didn’t want to make Dad feel like we are abandoning him considering he is contagious at the moment. I know he misses having the little one come to him.

More importantly, I really, really wanted to seriously train Mischa to use the toilet, and I think that doing it in another bathroom in another house would only make her regress (should she finally come around to actually being toilet-trained) if we transfer from one area to another. And this is the only time I have. This is one of those times being a working mom sucks, when you want to concentrate and give all your time and effort into something, and you can’t take a considerable time off. Sigh!

Will just have to cook up things to occupy us in the next few days. Hope we could visit Churches.