happy thoughts and worthy causes

Archive for March, 2016

My Toni and Baby IV

Being in my early 40s, I finally made like Brad Pitt and became a parent. Of course that began with finding my own Angelina Jolie first. Right, Toni? 😉  But I think my own Dad was roughly my age when I was born to him and my Mom. Funny that my partner, Toni is around my Mom’s age then, and we laugh about the many parallels we share with them now.

My Dad used to joke that he was already having court hearings at Vigan’s city hall while my Mom was a high school student playing volleyball at nearby St. Paul’s campus in the 1960s. Meanwhile, I told Toni my first visit to Tuguegarao was in the early 2000s when I was with the National Amnesty Commission giving out amnesty grant certificates to former NPAs. I visited their Sts. Peter and Paul Cathedral and marvelled at the old house at a street corner where a young Paulinian kept walking by. How was I supposed to know that was her Lola’s home and she could be that cute colegiala I was ogling.

My parents had a 12-year age difference, while Toni and I have 13 years between us. Could that be a problem, you ask? Didn’t bother my parents then, and so far it hasn’t been an issue with Toni and myself. Her youth brings energy and laughter to our relationship, while my maturity hopefully gives a bit of stability and wisdom to our partnership.

Like my Mom who came into a built-in family since my Dad had four young children from his previous marriage, I too became an instant parent with Toni’s 2 year old baby girl. And just as my step-brothers and sisters treated my Mom, I don’t think it matters to baby IV if I didn’t really have a biological participation in her coming into this world. She’s only concerned if I willingly wake up in the middle of the night to prepare her another bottle of milk, or if I help her mommy change her stinky diapers each time she soils them, and if I come home to them from work every day. And that explains why both baby and mommy don’t like it so much if I travel too long – they have separation anxiety and it disrupts their daily schedule of joining me for breakfast and of waiting for me for dinner.

I honestly enjoy all the travelling associated with my official work and various advocacies. But lately, I am hesitant to leave for any trips that will involve more than 2 days. Although I still get excited about visiting new places, I always end up wishing Toni was with me and I couldn’t wait to go back home to see my little girl.

Yes, there is a great “slowing down” happening in my life right now, but it doesn’t mean my world has stopped spinning or that my environment has “shrunk”. Parenthood just opened up new doors for me and my everyday life is like a merry-go-round and ferris’ wheel all rolled into one. Baby IV has us on a dizzying cycle of milk bottles, diaper changes, baths, feeding, and play times. There are lots of highs and lows of quality family bonding time at home, field trips to the zoo, emergency visits to the doctor, and pressure from extended expenses. Our bedroom once sacred and devoted to sleep and “sexy time” is now a venue for ruckus and rumpus even at 12 midnight. And as she is quickly growing up on us, she has learned to pick her own dresses and shop for her own shoes. Yup, she is already “Imeldific” at age 2 and a half.

Yes, I have officially entered middle-age and my life is crazy, happy right now.


On family reunions

Here’s to “modern-day” family reunions where most of your relatives don’t really ask much about why or why not you’re married/partnered/otherwisesingle; nor do you really need to explain who your partner is and why you’re of the same gender..So be brave, mga kapatid…your family members just might surprise you w/ their love and acceptance….‪#‎familyconnections‬ ‪#‎progressivetimes‬

The Fire Dancers of Crocodile Park

Davao City, August 2015: I had a chance once again to visit the Tribu K’Mindanawan Cultural Village at Davao Crocodile Park to accompany a small group of guests from Manila.  Conveniently loc…

Source: The Fire Dancers of Crocodile Park

It’s Warm and Easy in Tbilisi (Re-post from Feb 2012)

I started A Traveler’s Tale in July 2011.  As a new blogger in WordPress, not too many knew about this site yet and I was still struggling to understand how to best position this blog.  Back …

Source: It’s Warm and Easy in Tbilisi (Re-post from Feb 2012)