Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Setting the bar: How my mom raised the standard for motherhood

By Charles Lj Sido | April 19, 2024

Bearing a child for nine months and nurturing them until they can stand on their own is the simplest way to describe motherhood. But for me, it’s more about love.

As the only woman I promised to love for the rest of my life celebrated her birthday last April 8, I could only reflect on how she impressed me by embodying the essence of selfless parenthood—ultimately making me realize that she has truly set the bar so high for motherhood.

She set aside her own needs and wants to provide for her children’s needs and wants in life. Even when the world doubted my capabilities, she stood by my side and gambled for me.

The moment my eyes opened to the reality of life, it had never been easy growing up in a broken family. From deciding in which house I would celebrate Christmas and New Year’s to simply deciding which house I would sleep in for the night, each day was difficult for an innocent child. And yet, these were just some of the many challenges that circled my mind as a child and even until now.

As I grew older, I wondered what was going through my mom’s mind and how she might have felt then—carefully picking up the shattered pieces so that none of us, her children, would be harmed by the broken fragments scattered on the floor.

Despite how complicated our family is, I’ve witnessed firsthand how she paved the way for us. She showed nothing but remarkable strength and resilience amid the challenges and problems she faced even before she became a mother of three.

Without her knowing that through her experiences, she not only instilled in me but also taught me the importance of perseverance—to never let adversity stop me from wanting more in life.

Her selflessness and sacrifices indeed know no bounds, even if it means sacrificing her own needs and desires to ensure her children are comfortable. And if we were to talk about grace and resilience, she has all that for not allowing our hardships from the past to define who we want to be in the future.

Aside from being a mother, she is also a mentor, my trainee, and sometimes a chika buddy. We have built memories beyond what a mother and son can have. Whether it be baking cakes together on a random weekend or me teaching her how Microsoft Excel works, moments like these will always be those that matter the most to me.

As we are normally not perfect as human beings, so is she as a mother and me as a son. We may have disagreements at times, but what sets her apart is her willingness to listen, understand, and empathize.

Just like as the saying goes, “Ang ating ina ay ang ilaw ng ating mga tahanan.” Since today, I am currently living alone, I can truly attest to the fact that this quote is more than just a saying.

Now I know that, no matter how many light bulbs you switch on, nothing compares to the warmth of having one light bulb left switched on when you’re with your mom living under the same roof.

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