28 January 2008

Squeezed In Time Out

Finally after what seems to be like eons, I get to go out of the house. Ok so it may not be exactly what I wanted but at least for a few hours I get to be alone with myself—away from laundry, away from dishes, away from cleaning little tykes’ butts, away from “momma look at this…momma look at that”, “mama can I have this, mama can I do that”…away from scattered toys that I seem to be constantly picking up, away from ministry lessons that stare at me in the face waiting to be done, away from the church newsletter I have to complete every week…away away away---if only for a few precious hours.

Alright already! Where did I go? I went to Trinoma (it's a mall with the name that's short for Triangle North of Manila)—way way up north—to meet my boss. Okay so it’s a business meeting, but at least it’s in an altogether different setting.
Maybe I miss working outside the house, maybe I miss walking through malls on my way to work and on my way back home, maybe I miss browsing through shop windows looking at their latest “sales”, maybe I just miss the sights and sounds of the busy city. But then the thought of waiting for the bus or shuttle every morning, alighting, then getting on another bus or taxi to my place of work and going through the same route back suddenly just brings all that “missing stuff” to a sudden halt.

I feel my stomach lurch…no no no…I don’t think I can go back to doing that again. Nooooo!

So I’ll settle for this quick trip to meet my boss at one of those foreigner-owned Pinoy-franchised coffee shops that have been sprouting like mushrooms whenever a commercial niche presents itself.

No I don’t go there for the coffee either. More than a mug a day gives me a headache. And I’ve had my caffeine fix earlier in the day so I don’t need one at 4pm. I like the coffee shop ambiance though….just take away all those trying-hard-to-look-successful yuppies with their laptops and mobile phones or the looking-studious college students browsing through his college books with their titles facing out to other shop customers. For crying out loud—it’s a coffee shop where people are supposed to relax while they drink their brew, not an extension of the office or college library!

Sorry I digress. Anyway, I meet my boss. We talk shop for about an hour. He wants to know how I find my work, what’s up with the work load and what’s with the rest of the techwriters. Of course, he’s also discretely fishing for information on what we might be saying about our jobs (or about him) that we’re not telling him straight to his face. But he does it oh so sensitively and carefully.

He’s a nice boss but since we all work online at home, we don’t get to see much of him and vice versa. Since he meets his staff individually from time to time, the way things are put across from both sides might not be exactly the same for each one. Not communicating by communicating.

On my part, I’m happy with what I have at the moment on my workplate. And I’ll give it my best shot. So our talk ends quite well. And he hurries off to his next appointment. Me, I’m on my home again. Retracing my route the way I came--with a little sidetrip around the mall...hehehe.
The meeting took about an hour. My trip to the meeting place took two hours and it’s another two-hour trip via public transportation back to my house. Now you know why I don’t want to go back to work in an office.

25 January 2008

To My Soul Sister

It's my maiden post...well, on this blog at least...and I'm dedicating it to my Soul Sister (you know who you are woman!) who so animatedly encouraged me to create a blog here and write about stuff in my sphere.

Haha...dear woman. You probably have this supermom caricature of me in your head where I seem to have a handle on just about everything--my kitchen, my laundry, my kids, my husband, my ministry. Well, I hate to mar the quaint picture of success but the truth is, my real situation is not exactly how you might have it in your mind's eye.

That's why I'm glad we have our annual "catching-up-on-each-other" meetings in some mall or restaurant and not at my house (as much as I would love to have you come over and visit). You might be in for a really really big surprise. I have laundry that's close to Mt. Everest in height. The bathroom needs a facelift, the windows will appreciate a good scrubbing, some polishing will make the floor smile, my kids in Sunday School will be much happier if I got more organized with the Sunday activities, my real kids would be ecstatic if I just stuck to the 15-minute principle of time together, and my husband would probably shout "hallelujah" if I actually initiated intimate relations. Whew!

Well, soul sister...how's your picture of me now? Doing some updating? hehe...But God knows how hard I try to get my act to together. It is quite a feat though to be switching hats most of the time. And I keep telling myself: "I can do this. I can do this." What else is Philippians 4:13 for, right?

But some days woman, it really gets to me--this mommyhood thing. It's so so so much different from how I pictured it to be and planned it to be. Although I don't regret quitting my office job, the supermom picture I had in mind is harshly different from reality. Yes, reality bites. But then again, when one of my little ones gives me a mega sweet angelic smile matched with open arms closing in on me for a hug...reality's bite just doesn't matter anymore.