FATHER, MOTHER & SON… for just seven days (1st of 7 parts)

father_and_sonLife is an emotional rollercoaster mounted on a switchback stuffed with twizzles and twines.

The previous day, you might have seen a person beaming with so much happiness, laughing so contagiously and shaking hands or exchanging high fives with everybody. Today, the same person  could be in a desolate room, crying a river, smarting from the pains inflicted by something or someone. Tomorrow, what would it be? Nobody knows! That person might have succeeded in licking his emotional wounds and emerge from that desolate room, learn to smile again and gradually laugh his way out of whatever bad experiences he suffered from or that person might just  continuously plummet in the unfathomable depths of sadness.

Perhaps everything may depend on whatever twists and turns that may have been laid down by the GRAND DESIGNER of the switchback where our personal roller coasters run. We may desire all that we want to alter the course of our roller coaster and wriggle out of the undesirable whirl in the switchback. But that’s impossible. Life is said to be spontaneous. It takes its natural course. Like the water upstream, it will flow unstoppably to its tributaries until it reaches the wide open sea.

Generally, the switchback designed for my rollercoaster have both enthralled and frightened me. There were times I thought I would not be able to wiggle out of the depths of despair and sadness but my FAITH in God and my instincts of a survivor kept me afloat.

One of my most difficult journeys in the switchback happened a few years back. Those days in my life were both exciting and frightening. Perhaps that episode of my emotional rollercoaster ride could have been the most emotionally draining and exhilaratingly suspenseful.

 It happened when an angel dropped from the clouds  and gave me the privilege of becoming his father for seven days. I wanted it longer. But from up there in the switchback (and up there I felt enormous joy) I was pulled down, passed by a twist, my rollercoaster made a sudden stop… and the angel was gone.

Let me share it to you in seven installments… from Day 1 to Day 7!

— 0 —

DAY 1 – Tuesday

Yes, an angel came from heaven, transmogrified himself into a baby boy and presented himself to someone we’ll just call Sister Babe. That Tuesday morning, while grooming myself for work, Sister Babe came calling. Even without me seeing the one calling out my name from the terrace of our house, I was pretty sure it was her, that bass booming voice was so familiar.

As I opened the front door leading to our terrace,  what greeted me was like a scene from a movie – an old frowzy woman standing cleaving to a new-born infant slovenly swathed in an old blanket. She inquired if I still wanted to adopt a child and entreated me to get the baby she was clutching.

Of course, I wanted so badly to have a kid at home. I and my wife have yet to have a child after  14-year of marriage… our house, eerie silent, has been wanting to be invaded by the reverberating cries and the timorous laughter of a baby. But that notwithstanding, I just could not grab the baby from the hands of Sister Babe. I wanted to make sure that there was no monkey business involved in the process, I needed to do some background check. Besides, I wanted to talk it over first with my wife.

I then told Sister Babe that we will inform her that night about my decision regarding the baby.

Before leaving for work, I woke my wife up  who was then still sleeping and informed her about the baby. I saw her eyes sparkled in excitement. However, I cautioned her not to make any decision without us talking about it as I had to leave for work. Besides, I have been talking to another party regarding a 7-month old baby named Niña.

But as I was having a meeting with my colleagues in school, it was almost noontime already, I received a call from my wife. She told me that another party was interested in taking the baby, thus my decision was already needed. I told her to give me until evening to decide. But she was adamant in asking me to decide earlier. That’s her, what she wants, she should get immediately. It has always been like that. She told me a mouthful, about being indecisive and blah, blah, blah.

With my back on the wall, I retorted by saying that I would leave the decision to her. But, I assured her of my support for whatever decision that she would be making. I cut abruptly our talk because we would only be running in circles.

Never had she made a major decision in our entire union as husband and wife. I doubted if she would do so that time.

After a couple of hours, I called my sister-in-law and asked what was my wife’s decision regarding the baby. She told me that my wife had already brought home the baby.

It was a mixture of emotions that I had. I was WORRIED! She made a major decision without us seriously conferring with one another. But I was EXCITED too! I felt an inexplicable urge to go home. There was seemingly a magnet pulling me home. Indeed, it was different because in the past how I wished that I could just stay in the office and work a little more time. But that time, I know that there was an angel at home and I would like to be acquainted with him the soonest possible time.

I have not clutched a baby in my arms for a long time.

On my way home, I silently prayed… that may He make me and my wife ready for whatever responsibilities we would be facing.

When I got home, the baby was lying in the divan placed under the staircase. That’s where I would be lazing off while watching TV in our living room. Seated beside him was my wife, all smiles and so enthusiastic essaying her newfound role as a mother.

I approached them, knelt and gazed at the baby. He had fair skin, softer than cotton. I kissed him on his cheeks, he reacted and what a wonderful sight I beheld… his skin turned crimson and let out a short shriek as if feeling delighted with my kiss. My first on his cheek.

We finally had a child.

I paid Sister Babe a visit in their house after dinner. It was an angel she brought to us and words were not sufficient to express my gratitude for such. But I had to tell her about my reservations. Firstly, I made it very clear that I didn’t like that the parents of the baby were just nearby, it would make our situation, and most especially that of the baby so complicated. Lastly, I didn’t like that our situation of not having children for 14 years will be played upon. As it was, the long wait for a baby was already emotionally distressing.

I told her that I could rebound easily from emotional distress stressing that I am a tough hombre. But it would be different on the part of my wife.

For all those, Sister Babe said… “TRUST ME.” She told me that she would accompany me the following day to the midwife who attended to the mother of the baby. With that, I went home happily armed with an assurance of a person saying I should trust her.

Many “firsts” happened that evening. There were no disagreements that transpired between me and my wife. We ate happily together. We talked. We planned together. We woke up together and attended to the needs of our baby. I would say it was a miracle… miracles that occurred because an angel came. And that was only his first night with us. We decided to give him a name… MARC ANDREI … I wanted MARIE ANDREI. But as always, her wish is my command. Not that I am uxorious, I am just tired of disagreements. She wanted Santino for his nickname… but I wanted to call him EM-EY.

I slept approximately a couple of hours only. I could have gone sleepless and I would hove not complained.

(To be continued…)


Teacher-Writer Hardpen is my nom de plume. My real name is Massuline Antonio Dupaya Ligaya. Many times I was asked the question, "Why do you write?" I don't write for rewards nor adulation. When I write poems, stories or essays, seeing them completed gives me immense joy and satisfaction. The happiness and sense of fulfillment I feel when completing my works are my rewards. When I teach, I don't work but I play. The classroom is my playground, the students are my playmates, and the subject is our toy. Proud to be me! Proud to be a FILIPINO! TO GOD BE THE GLORY!

Posted on March 19, 2013, in Adoption, Parenthood, Treachery. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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