Publisher's Note

  • Publisher’s Note

    It was 22 years ago when I arrived in Canada and chose Calgary, Alberta to be my home.  Leaving my family and friends behind, it was a new adventure for me to be in a new country without knowing anyone.  That was the time I looked for a Filipino community paper and never found any, [...]

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Page added on March 27, 2012

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Pinoy Insights

Honor Your Parents: A Sweet Commandment

March 4, Daddy turned 68. March 7, Mommy turned 66. For such a long time, all of us their children never had a chance to be together for their birthdays. Except for our youngest sibling, all four of us have our own family, and sadly we live in four different countries in three different continents while our parents gladly stay in the Philippines. When you are abroad, what else is the most convenient way of greeting a loved one a happy birthday? Facebook. I’d like to share with you my Facebook birthday greetings to my parents:

“Happy 68th Birthday to my Daddy…I’ve told you, and others as well, that I shouldn’t have been the “junior” because of your cheesy name…lol…but that doesn’t make me less proud of you as my father. If there is one thing I want everybody to know is that my Daddy, even in his most struggling moments, has never even thought of leaving our Mommy and us his children. And that’s the way I live my life as a family man – to stay loyal to my wife and daughter no matter what… Healthier you is our family’s major campaign now. So take care of yourself. We love you so much Daddy :)

Here’s for my mother:

“If everybody is proud, Mommy is probably the least proud. Her pride always comes with joy, and it doesn’t have to do with who she is or what she’s become. Her children are her pride and joy – looking beautiful to other people is the least of her worries, but she always makes sure that even if she has no money her children have at least clean, fresh-smelling and, from time to time, new clothes. She’s the least reactive person. When everything seems falling apart, by just looking at her you’ll find peace and comfort because you know she’ll not judge you for what you’ve done. Happy 66th birthday Mommy. You are such a beautiful person. We love you very much.”

Our parents will always have a special place in our hearts, but one thing I am very proud of the Filipino children is that they go extra mile in taking care of their parents. I remember my co-worker, who is a Canadian, telling me that back at her previous workplace, more than 90 percent of her co-workers are Filipinos. She was saying that she has great admiration for her Filipino co-workers because come winter season, when most of them would only get part-time hours, anything they buy for themselves such as food would be on a tight budget just to make sure that they would be sending their parents money on a regular basis. It always surprises most non-Filipinos knowing that we still spend a considerable share of our income for our old parents despite the fact that we already have our own family. Even more surprising to them is that our parents actually live with us, under the same roof. Well, the thing is, you will hardly find Filipino parents that will kick their jobless adult children out of their house. Let’s not debate on the advantages and disadvantages of this common situation among Filipino families, but I’d like to make a stand that this is one Filipino family tradition that I would keep forever. Others may find it idiosyncratic for a community but in so many ways, close Filipino family ties have kept most Filipino children grounded, respectful and well-mannered. Yes, there are other ways of showing your undying love for your parents, but taking care of their needs and from time to time giving them gifts whether monetary or not are the most heartwarming and sweetest ways. Some of us may say that the Filipino society has put so much pressure of the Filipino children in always giving back to their parents, but remember that these children will become parents too. And I’m sure you’ll also be delighted if your children do the same to you. Personally, maybe I also feel obligated to give money to my parents, but the bigger part of me says that I am always glad to take such obligation. Besides, if we are going to be mathematical about everything here, the human biological clock tells us that we do not actually have the luxury of time to show our gratitude to everything that our parents have done for us. We might as well do our best now in taking care of our parents notwithstanding the geographical distance from each other. How sweet it is to love our Moms and Dads!









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