With mama, papa and Ioan.
With mama, papa and Ioan.

Mama Helen,

I feel proud each time I am asked about when my birthday is. And it’s not about my zodiac sign and definitely not about how I am supposed to be lucky because my birthdate both has numbers 2 and 8 on it, but perhaps it is most likely because every single time I am asked about my birthday, it also reminds me how much of a superhero you are to me.

20 years ago, your life nearly got endangered, and definitely you had a choice. There’s the easier and safer way, and there’s the harder way. But you chose the latter, you chose love, sacrifice and pain, just to deliver me in the caesarean section. You tried to be brave for me and chose to put your one foot ahead, while the putting the other six feet under.



They say there’s no such thing as endless love, they say it does not exist because people are not immortal. But I disagree, because what you have been doing for us, no matter how big or small it would be, is showing your version of love.

This love that you have showed to us transcends the romantic one, it’s the kind of love that’s more than enough, the kind of love that puts you in content, the kind of love that would not make you ask for more, it’s unconditional love.

I have failed you many times, hurt you many times, broken your heart many times, or even disappointed you, but you loved me despite those things. Love, which is supposed to be intangible, became tangible because of the things that you have done not only for me but for all of us in the family. Salamat kaayo Ma.

Going wacky with them.
Going wacky with them.


I always remember when you get mad at me, you sometimes say “dili pa na nimo mabaw-an kay di pa ka ginikanan” (you won’t understand it unless you become a parent yourself). What makes me happy is that although you get mad at me, you always me it a point to try and try and try to let me understand whatever point you would want to inculcate, you did not give up on me, and you still continue to do that up to now.

From what I see from you, and other parents out there, it’s really hard to be a parent, and it’s hard to raise a child, it’s sacrifice, and no sacrifice is easy. I may sometimes forget to thank you, I may not be showy in terms of being grateful, but I would like you to know that I am deeply thankful for all the things that you did and continue to do no matter how hard or how challenging it would be just to make us happy, just to see those little smile in us.

Family Picture circa 2014.
Family Picture circa 2014.


You’d always tell me I may not need much attention or guidance from you since you believe that I am independent enough to go about different things. However, when things start to go out of the way I wanted it to be, you are the first person who is there to talk to me and ask me about what happened. You don’t let it reach the point where things go out of hand.

Whenever I have a problem, big or small, you give your time just to listen. When in pain and suffering, you’re my comforter, the one I can call in the middle of the night just to seek words of wisdom, the one I call during dawn because I can’t make my lessons get inside of my head. You smile and share your happiness with my happiness. You become happy when I am and you try to make me happy when I’m not. In challenges, you’re the one who’s telling me to fight, who encourages me to fight and never back down, which is why I victor sometimes, you’re my number one critic of my works and give it a constructive criticism, you give me advices how to be better, and how not to go beyond the line. On the other hand, when I get defeated, and when I lose the game you’re still there telling me explicitly that it’s ok and there will always be next time, and telling me implicitly that I will always be the winner for you.

Mama Helen, I LOVE YOU VERY MUCH. I may not say this very often, but I mean it when wrote this. Happy Birthday and we are always here for you!

Save your tears, save it till May, till my Graduation day,

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