everyday with my son

Small stories of how it all went along

We. Bad. Parents.

We are the worst parents, but mostly it is just mum whose voice showered the neighborhood with loud curses, nags, commands etc.. to a strangers who would pass by and hear her would think that our kids (mostly it is Kenzo) was being tortured, but really I think he is already, traumatized and scarred for life from all the nagging, emotional and psychological punishment he got from his mum.

Now since I stopped taking my Zolodin, I get to be easily upset with his noise and his mum.  When Kenzo will act stubborn,  whine, fakes his cry his mum will shout loudly, curse and say really bad things to the kid.  She will shout, get mad to scare Kenzo to stop it.. but Kenzo will be more scared and end up crying more. It would be a cycle everytime, in the morning before going to work and at night after work. I used to be just passive (as much as I can)  and would just go and hide in my room and let all the noise settle but since I am off Zolodin, I think I can easily lose my patience as well.

I used to take the “good cop” role but now mum and I are both the bad cops. Kenzo is on the receiving end of all these and the saddest part he is only 6 years old.

Honestly, I am now without patience to deal with Kenzo. I am very close in hurting him physically. I will not be surprised that one day he will get welts and bumps. I just cannot control all the noise. I am struggling to control my anger.

I think we are stuck in a deep shit that we (but mostly his mum) created. She spoiled Kenzo and no matter how I try to correct her ways before, she is too stubborn to even listen and just like in many things in our household that my thoughts dont carry any weight, I am just an added noise in the house.

I used to offer suggestion on how we should do our parenting and maybe ( if I am heard) we had not created Kenzo to be bratty, defiant kid. But all my thoughts to his mum are just nothing bookish theories.

We created all these troubles that kenzo is in and now we are punishing kenzo for all the issues we dug for him. WE are indeed stupid and bad at the same time. Sorry Kenzo but life gave you us, the worst parents on the planet.

Spoiled B.

After their US trip, mostly mum mentioned to me was how Kenzo threw tantrums and became very uncontrollable. He cried over a little disagreement, showed disdain when things did not go his way, quite aggressive to other kids etc..

His mum showed all the fatigue and the effects of what I had been trying to warn to her about many times before,  that she was doing her parenting wrong, but like many of what I said it fell on deaf ears.

One thing that I hammered to her before was from Tiger Mom Amy Chua who said something like ” Our Job as parents is not to be liked by our children… but to teach them…”  As parents we wanted our kids to have all things they want, do all the things they enjoy etc.. not knowing that we are already hurting them by making them weak, entitled, lazy. Our instinct is to pamper them rather than teach them, we choose short term gains than long term results. We wanted them to be happy now and not knowing that as adults they will turn out to be lazy, entitled, depressed, unadjusted etc.

Now Kenzo turned into a bit of monster, created by being spoiled by his mum’s way and now she was giving up and showing her frustration on Kenzo, which in fact a problem she created.

I remember when we started our house construction, she wanted just her  plan and then it went over the budget and after losing  P60,000 then she came to me and  asked me for a way out, while when I offered help prior to spending the money (which just like in many things) was dismissed as a nuisance.  Now after burning the money I am all of a sudden a bright spot to offer help. By the way, our house project is about to start and she was back in planning it and I try to warn her about things, but I am again waived off. I think she is building our house like most that goes over the budget. She is starting the build from the top, she is building starting from the expensive fixtures, locks, lighting, bathroom, finishes etc while not concentrating on the basic first before moving up. Ex: she is shopping for the best toilets but not making sure that we will get strong and consistent water first.  Our water supply here is close to African desert level pressure is weak and that is if we are lucky, sometimes we don’t get any.

Now I am asked (again) for help, “when the shit hits the fan”, I am now asked to look for a fix. It is frustrating  to be set aside, dismissed and when things go bad I am now all of the sudden important and pulled in to clean up.   I hated it and I honestly hated doing it but sadly I am in the same sinking boat and hardly got no choice.

Tutoring Liam

Kenzo is back in the USA for his annual vacation and I am told that he is having a blast, but who would n’t? He is enjoying a cold weather, at Tahoe they were  able to catch snow, when I was there 3 months ago I got snowstorm and it was borderline scary.

Now since Kenzo is away I thought to corner Liam and tutor him step by step, but it is not as easy as teaching Kenzo. In fact, Kenzo just learned mostly on his own via his Ipad.. that was in fact any lazy parent wet dream, almost no effort was needed.

I tried to crawl (figuratively) to hold Liam;s attention and to make him know that learning is important. I have to be creative and work my way slowly to get him to start learning but I am not as successful as I wanted to be. I lose interest and easily give up. I really have to snap out of this slump or else Liam’s future is at stake.

I know it is never a child’s fault for not learning, it is my belief that it is always the parents fault for not trying hard to teach. But really it is hard, or maybe I am just spoiled on how easy it was with Ken, to teach a toddler… but we got no choice but to succeed

 

Leaving his small school

5 days ago Kenzo graduated from kindergarten and is now ready to move up to grade 1 at San Beda. He even got an loyalty award from his school (Jose Maria Montessori School) for staying there there for 4 school years.

Yesterday, I went to the school to get Kenzo’s Evaluation card and all his old stuff like shoes, extra clothes, some work papers etc.. and while waiting outside it hit me that it will be the last day I am gonna be there and Kenzo will maybe never ,go back to that place where he spent his toddler years. It is kinda sad to leave a place like a second home to him, it is where he slowly matured to a young boy he is now, he learned  and met his friends,  loves going to school and really enjoyed it there. But sadly it got to end as he need to transfer to a big school.

He started there at 2 years and 8 months, yesterday I looked back at the days when we still have to carry him to the door of his school and will only agree to go down once his class is about to start. His first Nana was Joy and she would carry Kenzo from the car to the front door of the school and wait there until the teachers ask him to go in.  In his first year, often he would cry and will fear going to school. We even have to force him to wear his uniform and ride the car.

Kenzo had come a long way now, as he is more sociable (but still relatively shy) and more mature than his first year there. He has grown and have to say good bye to his small school.

He met his first Best friends there Rai-Rai, then it was Gabe and last school year was Ken and Gab.

Yesterday I was standing outside the school and realized that was the exact spot where I used to wait for Kenzo everyday for about 26 months. Day after day starting Jan 2013 until Sept 2015 I will brought and picked him up, waiting there made me remember the past as if I was waiting for kenzo again but in fact I was waiting to get his stuff and talk to his teachers maybe for the last time.

Thank you, for all the wonderful memories, stories and for teaching him. Thanks!  ‘Small school’ — Jose Maria Montessori.

Cooking game

Though Liam is widely into guns, war games, action figures, super heroes etc.. one thing that makes him different from Kenzo is his fondness of playing as a cook or a store keeper, which is mostly played by girls. Perhaps when Liam played these games Kenzo often don’t interfere or borrow his toy cookwares and plastic foods so he ended up enjoying it as his own.

Lately, if he is in a toy store and asked him what toy to buy he will often choose cookwares etc.. It looks like a girly choice but Liam is far from girly, he is as aggressive as his brother or maybe even more, it is just that he is currently into it and we are amused and found it funny at the same time .

He will pretend cooking, serving or/and selling and we pretend to enjoy, eat and pay him for it.

Tension

Stressed and tense are the words to describe the situation in our home currently. It is the first time I felt this much bad and heavy cloud inside our house. Usually it is just me who brought the heavy stuff but there is now mum and I, a combo of negative, hateful emotions.

Even from a distance and judging from our body language anyone will know  that we are turning into a ticking time bomb and is just waiting for a trigger to start the countdown to destruction.

To make an analogy, all is now on the downhill path. We reached the happiest point and now we are rolling down.

The saddest part of all of this is that the two kids are oblivious of it, they just continue doing their happy games, acting to be like any normal kids, enjoying their youth and not knowing or realizing that all is likely gonna end…

 

Heavy weight

We can feel the massive weight of many things and this has affected Tere mostly, these are several issues piled on top of each other and burdened all of us.

First, Kenzo’s injury. His broken arm greatly put a lot of concern on us because even with a broken arm he still continues his rowdy ways and this cause us to panic most of the time and scared us to death of another accident or re-injury. Kenzo will still actively do his stuff, as like any kid will, as if his arm is not in a cast and two metal pins are what keep his bone together.  This is one of the weight we are now carrying.

Second, house construction. we are in a process of completing our loan requirements and getting our permits. The bureaucracy  in getting permits are tough, plus the cost of each step that we need to do. You need to start with Homeowners, Developer, Brgy, City Gov’t and the seemingly endless signatories and fees just to finish each step. It is one of the saddest thing why our country is in shambles.. the red tape just to get a permit is painful and everyone wants to be paid just to get an approval. You need to prepare to give “grease money” or else they are gonna “seat on” your application to gather dust.

Third, Tere’s dad. she took the responsibility to make personal visits to his dad, but going to QC is a painful trek due to the hours just to get there. She has to save half a day for each visits which she prefers to spent to be with the kids. I offered to suggest to her to share that  responsibility  to her other siblings but according to her they won’t do it. I insisted to make them do it to her free a  bit.

Fourth, is me. Days ago lost my Zolodin and decided not to buy a new batch. So for about 10 days I stopped taking it and during that time I started to feel I am getting back to my very low energy self. This makes me a burden than someone that can help out. Good, that I found my meds and started to take them again for about 5 days now.

Fifth, Kenzo’s attitude. Since he was a baby I kept on lecturing Tere to adjust his parenting but all was for naught, because really who am I to give advices. Kenzo has turned into a spoiled cry baby and now, in our current situation his tantrums put her mum and all of us in a tough corner.

The most bad words by her mom spilled out these past few days. I feel sorry for Kenzo that he has to catch all of it, considering emotionally he is fragile. Just like me, I think he has a tendency to be depressed.

Sixth, the overall cost involved in building a house and everyday expenses.

All of these are sitting on our shoulders but mostly it was on tere. It was a tough and ugly situation we are in now. Often I would just hope tere will just leave the house so that the house will be quiet… Now I started to realized that I need to fix my estate taxes, transfer properties to my kids, finish the house, free up all businesses I handle for  Sue. Travel one more time and END IT.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

USA Trip

I think the most recent US vacation might be my last or maybe second to the last. But really I am not considering that I will be back there. One main reason is Sam is now turning into a lady and everytime I visited I turned their master’s bedroom to my own and everyone else will be cramped to hers. To a young lady that is an inconvenience and I think I am slowly being that to her. When I started visiting she was just a little girl in fact her favorite show on TV was Disney Junior’s Jake and the Neverland Pirates, which is what Kenzo used to watched. During that time she was OK  that her whole family were squeezed in her room.. if I remember it correctly she likened that to a pretend camp out.

The other reason was the issues during my flight, delays, cancellations, rebookings, and more delays. It was one scary episode that I got on that trip.

I am also looking old, fat and bald. As I turned into an ugly old fart my introversion go with it meaning I am not proud that I  look  more horrible than the last time people there saw me.

I sincerely hope not to go back, not unless I ended up with a stash of money to buy hotel rooms for me to saty in and not to  need to barged in other people’s houses.

Liam gotta go there, maybe when he is 4 or 5 and by then Kenzo will be 8 or 9, hopefully their mum can handle them on a long flight by her own because I am not looking forward to go back.

All those US trips are really memorable and I am very happy to have all those. There were only a few hiccups compared to all the good things I got. It showed me a different culture, a culture of kindness, respect, friendliness, fairness etc… sadly  is not at all common in Manila. I get to see those really nice places that had etched a lasting imprint in me.  Those good food, great Silicon Valley community, and the great cool weather. I am going to miss it but I guess I have to accept that there is an end to everything.

 

Another US Trip

*Late post*

Around the end of December 2016 I left for SFO- Bay Area to be again at Menlo Park. Just 2 days after Xmas I was packing to fly out to celebrate New Year in the other side of the world.

At the airport, I arrived 2 hours before my flight but since it was a holiday season the airport was cramped with more than usual number of passengers. NAIA T2 was full, as one american passenger observed, “there is not even a place to sit.” Passengers occupied all the seats, the window ledge and some are even on the floor. It feels like we were  refugees awaiting asylum. The problem with T2 is that they have a cordoned Gate area which is too small, the seats are not enough to accommodate all and once inside it is inconvenient to walk around, use the restroom, buy snacks, etc… because your seat will be gone and you have to fall in line again to the final x-ray screening section. That  situation we had will surely remind anyone that we are in a poor, backward country, to make matters even worst our flight (PR 114) was delayed by almost 2 hours and this added salt to our injuries(so to speak).

I thought when we started to board that was the end of our hardship, but when I settled onto the seat I realized (and the passengers that sat next to me) that we were in an old,  small, obsolete plane. It does not have an in flight movie, music or even a working lamp where I can use to read my book and the seats were about a few inches smaller.

It was an horrible flight.

At Dec28 at around 830pm I was outta SFO and Sam, Eric and Susie greeted me and in a while I am in their home. The weather was cold but I realized that it was not too cold and it was something I can easily manage. I slept with just a light jacket and shorts but at early morning the cold bit me hard, I was awoken by the temp and I was literally freezing. I quickly looked for my thick jacket and used 3 layers of clothes to sleep that night, and that was the time I fully realized that it was indeed winter.

The first few days was nothing really unusual, I stay at Monte Rosa to kill time, went back and forth to kill more time, spend some time with Claro and at Susie’s time out will either go to buy some stuff to bring back home, or those on the  list of Tere, or also to eat out for our dinner… which is nothing far from what we had been doing every time I visit.

I was back driving for Sue and towards the end of my vacation I also drove Sam to school a few times.

New year’s eve: we spent it watching Moana. I Literally spent my last hours of 2016 and the first hour of 2017 inside a theater. It was a nice movie, really cute and we were  soo relaxed on those Lazy Boys we sat on.

Before watching Moana we first ate at a chinese restaurant that has quite OK food but has some mediocre customer service ( which is a norm in most chinese restos)… the food is not something I will choose over Panda Express but it is still kinda OK.

The main attraction of my whole trip was going up Lake Tahoe. When we got there Temp is about freezing point and everywhere was covered by thick white snow. It was such a pretty sight and just by mere looking at it can melt all the stress away.

We arrived about late afternoon and after resting in our rooms we head out to eat at Applebees. I also bought some bread and soda to partner with my Spam as my food in my room. As the night comes the temp go down further to about -4.

The next day we head out to see the tourist sights, we went around the Lake, eat out, drive, road trip, eat again and basically enjoy.

Our plan was to sled the next day and do some fun at snow, but when we woke up the next day there was a slight blizzard and it closed all ski and sled slopes. Unable to do anything we just decided to go to the Nevada side and ‘Casino Hop’. I thought them to play the Roulette, which we won a few times but lost a lot more, sadly.

We still tried to make most of the trip considering we cannot do much as there were heavy snow everywhere.

On the day we are to leave, It was scary. I am scared that we might get caught up there as news of heavy blizzard to come down in the afternoon of the day we were to leave. I am worried that I might not be able to catch my flight or finish some of my errands if we get stuck there for 2-3days more.

On the morning we were to leave, I am really antsy and I was silently hoping that we to move and drive down ASAP before the blizzard caught us. As we drove down snow started to pour, some 2WD cars were asked to use chains, travelling will be about 25MPH only.

As we crawl down Tahoe, I am worried and scared, as I dont want to be back there in that weather.. after about 2-3 painful hours we were over it and the snow was replaced by mild raindrops. Yehey! after a while we were in rainy Bay Area and that ended my quick fight with heavy snow.

After Tahoe, I was back doing the same stuff… buying, window shopping, eating out etc.. I prepared to flight out 3 days after Tahoe trip but that did not end there… some few hiccups happened after (see my previous post: Flight Delays)

 

 

 

Broken Arm II

To see your kid in a sling, his arm in a cast and a metal pin  protruding out of his skin is just very painful to see. It has a feeling like that of a melting wax, I tried to look strong when I am cleaning his wound but inside I am almost crumbling and crying.

I am stressed by all of this and it also does not help that I run out of Zolodin.

Kenzo now being injured, is a little less jumpy, less boisterous, less excited and I know this put him under a lot of stress. He is now too defensive and will instantly hurt Liam when he sees his brother on the verge of bothering him.

His injury will take about 4 weeks and right now we are just on the 3 day and it feels like we have this load for more than a week. I would want to pull the days forward so this nightmare will end soon, really this is too much for me to see and bear.

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