Friday, September 18, 2009

The Habit Of Shores

"Anak may ipapakita ako sa iyo?"

"Ano yun?"

"Basta, kunin mo yung bag sa may tabi ng electric fan." I picked up the nylon bag leaning next to the fan.

She took out two pieces of glossy paper. One was a black and white photo of several children sitting next to one another. The other was a sepia image of two girls, one was sitting on a bike and the other hugging her.

"Hulaan mo kung sino si Ninang jan?" She was referring to her sister, my favorite aunt.

"Hmmm... Eto?" I pointed my finger to the young girl beside her.

"Hindi mo mamukhaan si Ninang mo?" How can I recognize her, the bunch of kids in the picture were barely five years old.

"Sirit na." I finally decided to quit.

Standing far left among the huddled children on the black and white photo was an odd-looking girl. Her face expressed annoyance, her curly hair sprawled all over her head. The girl on the picture is my aunt, and more than half a century after the photo was taken, she still has this aura that makes anyone feel uncomfortable when she is around.


It was past 3 in the morning when I went to the master's bedroom to see if my mom was sleeping. Waking up at such ungodly hour has become a habit - a persistent nocturnal nature asserting itself against my life's new order. Truth was, I sought her permission to allow me to go to work. An assistant team leader from the graveyard shift was in need of my help. The client required him to do some extra work before his shift is over.

Mom complained that it was too early to leave; that the streets were still dangerous to travel. Peril was the least of my worries, what was essential is for me to show up anytime I am needed. Life revolves around the floor of my workplace nowadays, what difference does a day or night have on my presence.

But seeing my mom's worried face, her unspoken longing to have a companion at the twilight hour of the night compelled me to stay. After all, we seldom talk when we see each other in the evening, and the utol was nowhere to be found again. It's just me and her looking after each other.

So this is bonding time for us. I stayed long enough to help her get out of the bed and watch her go to the bathroom and do her thing. When she returned, I fixed her blanket and stretched it to cover her entire body.

And I silently daydreamed, until she was assured that I will never leave until its really time to go.

Ten minutes before five, I readied myself for work.


Will be buying toilet seat for her toilet
and talk to a carpenter to install the safety
bars I bought for her bathroom last year.

Our roles are beginning to change.


<*period*>; said...

be strong.


since i worked in a dept store before, the price range of a toilet seat ranges from 700-1000...matibay na klase na yun at maayos yung cushion...those beyond that are more of a branded thing..

Mr. Scheez said...

i miss inay *sob* =(

~Carrie~ said...

my friend recommended to watch "In My Life"... with our moms. I'm watching it this weekend. Have you seen it?

Knox Galen said...

Carrie: Mom wants to watch the movie with me. Hindi ko alam kung bakit.

Mr Scheez: Your story reminds me that time is against me. My mother is aging, so I try to make the most of our time.

Period: Sa MC Builders ako maghahanap eh. Pero thanks sa suggestion.

<*period*>; said...

knox, i was thinking of toilet seat covers.stupid of me...tsk

anyways, you said MC builders...nice choice kasi marami kang mapapagpilian dun at medyo mura kumpara sa can also look sa mga home depot..normally kasi mura siya sa mga ganun...

blagadag said...

baka gusto ni mother si luis or si john lloyd maging partner mo. joke.

Abou said...

takot din ako sa reversal of roles within family. but i know it will come hay...

pie said...

this post made me sad and think of my own mom too..

we all have the same fears, i guess, reading from the other comments as well.

be strong, knox

Knox Galen said...

Period:I paid P900 for the toilet seat. Okay na. Hindi tinitipid ang magulang. Hehe.

Blagadag: Actually, now is the perfect time for me to find a john lloyd. Hehehe.

Abou: Panganay ako eh. Sooner or later, the responsibility will fall to me.

Knox Galen said...

Pie: Live life one day at a time.


june showers said...

touched naman ako sa warmth mo. pero tama, nag-iisa lang ang nanay kailangan alagaan at mahalin.

Knox Galen said...

June Showers: Ganun ka rin eh, kaya tayo magkasundo eh. Hehehe.