Father, Mother & Son…for just seven days (5th of 7 parts)
DAY 5 (Saturday)
My car was right on top rollercoaster track and I know that soon, after a twist, or a bend, or a spin then down again I’ll go. But while my emotional rollercoaster was traversing a plane at the pinnacle I tried to enjoy the ride.
In the wee hours of Saturday morning, I took care of Marc Andrei, I allowed my wife to have a well-deserved sleep. It was a crash course I took up that time – Babysitting 101. I put milk on a dispenser reading carefully the instructions in the can (from the original milk given by ate Baby we decided to buy a better infant formula – SIMILAC – that was prescribed by the Pediatrician who checked Marc Andrei that day). I happily attended to Mark Andrei’s need that night. I hummed softly to his ears songs to put him to sleep (I think he liked best the “hummed” version of “NOBODY”). I clutched him gently in my arms whenever he would not stop crying. But when I felt that Marc Andrei’s back was wet, I was forced to wake my wife up to change our son’s diaper. Well, I have not tried changing Marc Andrei’s diaper yet, so I paid attention to what my wife was doing at that time because I wanted to do the honor of changing Marc Andrei’s diaper the next time around.
My wife went back to sleep, she had not had a good one in the past days, I followed shortly thereafter when I was sure that Marc Andrei was safe, secured, and comfortable.
I didn’t get much sleep that day but I worked all day inspired. There were no classes but I went to school to finish paperwork that piled up in the past three days. With so much enthusiasm, I recounted to some colleagues who were also in school our experiences the past days.
Then night came. While Marc Andrei was deep in slumber in the daybed, I and my wife had dinner. She was obviously perturbed, she was seemingly not minding what I was telling her about my plans regarding Marc Andrei’s papers. I sensed trouble. I was afraid my rollercoaster would soon hit another spin, another twist, another treacherous dive. I just hoped that it would not be so trenchant a fall that could throw me off my car in the rollercoaster.
After dinner, we sat separately at both ends of the daybed, March Andrei was between us.
Then I asked my wife to drop whatever bomb she wished to explode.
What she told me left me dumbfounded.
My wife told me that the mother of Marc Andrei is not a 19-year old student from Manila but rather a woman from Bulacan. And of all places, the mother is from our own community, right in the neighborhood where we are residing, and living just two houses away from us.
Down went my car in my emotional rollercoaster. How I had wished I was just dreaming at that point.
My wife told me that it was whispered to her by very reliable sources – by well-meaning people who thought we deserve to know the truth. But ate Baby is a woman not capable of DECEPTION. I know I could TRUST her. Like my mom, who was born in Lal-lo, Cagayan, ate Baby is an Ilocana. We would normally speak in Ilocano when there were no other people with us who could not understand the said dialect. We are both officers of our homeowners’ association, I was the President and she was the Vice-President. I had to give her the benefit of the doubt. I believe that she perfectly understood what I told her that Tuesday night when we had a serious talk about Marc Andrei.
But just the same, I have to act on the matter divulged by my wife. After dinner, I started piecing together things said by my wife and the information I gathered clandestinely from our neighbors, especially those who were residing nearest to the reported real mother of Marc Andrei. Then I talked to ate Susie, my confidante in our neighborhood, who, like me, can speak both Ilocano and Ibanag.
Ate Susie could not believe what she heard. She doubted that ate Babe would deceive me and my wife in that manner. I asked ate Susie (and she agreed) to drop by ate Baby’s house and see how the latter would react if she would tell her that we are again thinking of returning to her Marc Andrei because we already know who the real mother is.
Notwithstanding the situation that emerged, our love for Marc Andrei remained. My wife and I talked about all possible eventualities. She made it so clear to me that even if the real mother lives just nearby, she wouldn’t mine. Marc Andrei is hers and nobody could take him away from her.
Then at almost midnight, I received a text message from ate Susie saying that ate Baby denied knowing who the mother of Marc Andrei is.