This morning did not unfold the way it normally does. I woke up at my usual 3-330am, transferred to the couch after my brother had left for work, to catch on more sleep, and then finally got up around 4am to begin my Friday.
As I was having my first mug of coffee and figuring out what to prepare for my breakfast baon, I thought of what my parents would be doing today. I wondered, as I always do, what they would decide to have for lunch, how they would spend their Friday, how they would feel having all their kids out and having our lonely house all to themselves.
My parents are elderly, and unfortunately, my brothers and I cannot take them out as often as we used to anymore because apart from their illnesses, they tire pretty easily nowadays. They stay home almost all the time. We only get to spend time with them when we come home from work (which is always cut short because sometimes either my brother and I are already too tired from work, or my parents turn in very early at night, or chores get in the way). My brother and I spend the weekends mostly running errands and doing chores. I’m not proud to say it, but I feel we don’t get to spend enough quality time with mom and dad. And that bothers me.
So as I was having my coffee early this morning, I decided to ditch work today and do something nice for them. But what?
I remembered they’ve been craving for ginataang halo-halo for a couple of weeks now, so I offered to go to the palengke to get the ingredients. They know how much I dislike going to the palengke, so they were in disbelief that I would actually go. Their faces lit up the moment they realized I was serious about it.
The ginataang halo-halo was cooked and enjoyed by my two tanders (and me of course). During the meal, we were able to catch up and talk. There were lots of stories and lots of laughter – – simple, but quality time.
I’m not proud about ditching work today, and I don’t claim to be the best child ever, I just feel when one must weigh family and work, the former trumps the latter. And clearly in my case today, I made the right choice. When family and loved ones, especially parents, are in the picture, I feel there’s no such thing as ‘I’m too busy with work’ or ‘I don’t have the time’. Hands down, and it doesn’t even have to be said, you make time.