It’s almost one in the morning. I sit here typing away on my laptop on the bed while my daughter sleeps next to me. We spent three hours just playing on the bed tonight before she went to sleep. Since we got here, that has never happened before.

When I am here in Bicol, I get so busy that I do not get to spend a lot of time with Lia. I do not even get to sleep a lot or eat a lot for that matter. Everything seems urgent, every little thing seems important, everyone needs attention – and there is only one little me. I’m not complaining, I’m just saying how different my life here is from the life I live as a plain housewife, full-time mom, part-time photographer, part-time traveler, part-time web designer and all around procrastinator in Manila.

Here I have no concept of day and time. I get home at odd hours, sleep at odd hours, wake up at odd hours, and I can’t tell whether it’s a weekend or a weekday.

Today I spent all day writing letters and found myself still home at seven in the evening. I pondered whether I was going to the bar to oversee things, see friends, meet with people, but decided I didn’t wanna deal with going home late at night or early in the morning again. Not with all the stress I have been dealing with the past days.

What stress, you will ask? One, I almost drove the car into the neighbor’s balcony when I lost control of the wheel this one morning at about three. My knees and hands were shaking like mad. Two, I lost my wallet in the mall, the wallet with all my cash in it three days ago. I lost about a thousand pesos and papers, receipts etc etc but I shook it off, saying it was just money. But three, someone took my wallet out of my bag yesterday. The wallet without the money but with all my credit cards, ATM cards, IDs… yes, my beloved University of the Philippines Diliman ID is gone. And so is that lock of Lia’s hair that I kept from her first haircut. I’m just so tired these days that my brain’s always scattered about and I have been so careless.

So yes today I decided I was just going to stay home and rest, I do deserve to rest, and it made Lia very very happy to see me at home, at this hour. She kept kissing me, hugging me, having her arms around my neck while hugging my back while I was eating dinner and while we were hanging out on the bed.

naked baby in the house!

I realized, my daughter’s missed me so bad.

And then, I realized one more thing, it’s her birthday today. Yes, today. She is now two years old.

I’m glad I stayed home today. It’s my baby girl’s birthday. The only one. The one whose world revolves around me. The one who says Mama like 100 times in one day, just because it’s her favorite word.

Today I will dedicate this entire day for my little Lia. There is no party, just time spent together. It’s enough gift for her birthday. In fact, it’s the best gift I can, as her mother, give.

Sorry baby if Mama’s just been so busy….

I always cry on your birthday. I always feel like it’s your birthday as much as mine. The day you came into this world was the day I became a mom. It wasn’t easy, it was never easy and I don’t expect that it will be easy in the days to come, but let me tell you, and show you, that having you was the best thing I ever did in my life and you made me the happiest person in this world that day and the many days after that.

You Smile Just Like Me

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