everyday with my son

Small stories of how it all went along

Archive for the tag “sad”

Liam’s barber

Unlike Kenzo, Liam is kinda scared of getting a haircut. He would bawl upon learning that he is entering a barber shop, once he sees those big clunky chairs and a barber waiting for him while holding a pair of scissors is enough to make him scared. It is always tough to get his hair done but good thing,  Liam has a very nice shiny hair, surely the nicest set of hair I had ever seen, because of this he can delay haircuts as it always remained looking great.

When Kenzo started going to the barber he hated it, but after a while he learned to trust his permanent barber-Neil but one day after cutting Ken’s hair for about 3 years he just left and no where to be found.

Just today, mum brought Liam for a haircut and it seems he did not cry today. He entered my room shouting that “I got a haircut and did not cry and just closed my eyes like I were sleeping” (paraphrased for clarity).

Haus Construction

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We are in the first couple of weeks in our house construction. And a few of my ideas I wanted to be adopted, it is more of a long term plan and it is more on necessity than style.

Reason why I agreed to buy this house it is because it has a separate lot that I can sell when Kenzo or Liam entered college. It is more of a college fund or investment whose value will increase with inflation and by the time Kenzo or Liam is in college the selling price of the lot is hopefully equal or more than the cost of college fees. I also made the house design with the future option to sell in mind. Like the location of windows, doors, entrance and even the front setback that we can also be converted to a carport should we sell the other lot.

But it turns out not what I expected. Mum is not to keen on selling the other lot, she just let me believe that she likes my idea just to go on with the house construction. Now the house has an overhang that encroach on the other lot. Windows are above the property line, I hoped it has a setback or an allowance so we can still open our windows should we sell the other lot.

I want the house to be in line to a minimalist style where we keep only important stuff inside the house to avoid clutter, accumulation of dust and to make it easy to maintain and clean. I prefer minimalist so that in the future we wont have to be dependent on a househelp. A house where we dont have too much stuff lying around, furniture that can be easily cleaned, open spaces, less house decors (that are just a big magnet for dust). We also need to limit our clothes and stuff that we keep.

One idea that I had recently  was how Jobs and Zuck wear the same style of clothes almost always and I realized that we can do that with our bedsheets and curtains etc. Truth is we dont need a bedsheets, pillow cases that is different every month. We can just keep about 3 sets and just alternate them. Too bad I bought several sets maybe about 10-12 already when I was in the US… well, maybe I just have to sell them perhaps.

It is hard to make someone a minimalist, we have a tendency to keep things and put heavy sentimental values to our things. We like to hoard and make boxes filled with memories that we wont bother to check again,  except only when you are very sick and about to die. We tend to over-appreciate our stuff, no matter how old and useless it is, and will not let go. Problem with this it will accumulate dirt, gather dust and become a nice home for little insects and pests.

I have been trying to make mum towards this but I am hardly making a dent, but I am still pestering her and still trying.  

I dont intend to keep a househelp, I feel it is a form of slavery and I dont really feel good about it… but having a maid is ingrained in our culture and maybe there are only a few of us who wants a home or willing to live without it.

Convincing Mum to  not have a house help is the hardest thing, as I said it is already ingrained in our culture, and it is even quite unheard of to think of not having one. 

I want all the important stuff settled first before thinking of the aesthetics. I prefer to make sure the house will have strong, continuous water before thinking about the nicest shower head, toilets etc. I want the house to be solar powered so we can freely use ACs to fight humidty. I think even with the most expensive exterior paints, interior design etc will mean nothing if the house is uncomfortable and humid. I believe an ugly house with AC trumps a nice house with poor ventilation.

We are just starting with the house and issues and disagreements are coming out, our ideas clashed and a common ground is often hard to reach. Well, goodluck hope will be able to finish this and set out roots in our new house.

 

II

problem with house construction is laymen don’t have the expertise to know what is standard measurement in construction. We cannot make the computations of loads, lateral loads etc on our own. We have to get another opinion of another engineer to determine if our house is within standard.

For example: Using of a 5′ CHB instead of 6′ for external wall, I was told that since it is just a small house a 5′ will do. Now there is now way to know if that is true or the contractor is trying to save cost to increase profits.

Wall spacing of vertical rebar,  I read ,to make house stronger should be 40cm but when I asked about this they said the standard for a 2 storey house is 60cm, then again I have no way to know this.

If anyone is gonna have a house constructed it is better to detailed all the specs you prefer on your house or get a standard quote from the con\tractor and asked it upgrade the materials to make the house stronger. Increase the size of hollow blocks, if they quote that they are gonna use 4′ CHBs upgarde it to 5′. If they told you that they are gonna  use a 10mm rebar, asked them to use 12mm etc…

Contractors incentive is to quote a low price so clients will give them their business, they  then will try to cut corners to increase profit.

It is a tough position to be in especially when you just youtube and google trained kind of a handyman.

What a question.

Kenzo just a few hours ago complained about his asthma and his itchy body and  asked us “why are these things happenning to me?”

I knew Kenzo is kinda like me and I am scared of it. I am suffering from PDD or Dysthmia or three decades now and the way Kenzo forward his question ,silently I knew, he is capable of deep thought, critical thinking, introspection, self analysis etc. Which are good things but also all of those can be a good push towards depression.

At an early age, he is already being hard on himself, maybe starting to dislike his situation, perhaps starting to realized that he is not getting a fair deal from life and these scared me. I knew how painful depression is and how it can ruin anyone and now I am faced with the possibility that I might have passed this gene to my kid.

Kenzo just broke his arm and was just healed a week ago, but now he has asthma and some rashes all over his body. He is in a bad state and the month of March and April has not been good to him.

When I was asked that question. I dont know the answer and I just gave the best BS i can think of. I just said, “he gotta do good things as good things will happen to those who do nice things” I asked his mum to massage him, I put on Vicks on his foot and covered it with socks, we  put Calmoseptine on his rashes and sang him a lullaby.

Kenzo is one brillant kid but I think his pre-disposition to sadness can be a hurdle to get what he wants in life… I just hope he will snap out of it and not fall the way I did.

Foreigner?

The Nana of Liam had been asked a countless of times, if Liam is a foreigner’s son or at least one of the parents are.  Liam has a different face and not very filipino, more Far eastern asian than south eastern. He can pass as a Chinese, Japanese or Korean and not very believable as a pinoy.

Some of the good points of Liam is his being pleasant and friendly, it seems he likes all people and would say “hi”, “bye”, “hello” to strangers automatically.

When he is dressed in real nice clothes I still always marveled how he look good, really, not because I am biased, but because really he is damn nice.

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.

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.

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.

 

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.

“Then pay for it!”

You are always bound to lose an argument when you don’t have money and the rebuttal against your points are “then pay for it!”.

When I complain (how I don’t like the style, color etc) about clothes that was just purchased, I will get a reply “you don’t like that? then get a new one and PAY FOR IT!”

“I think we should just enroll him now to an affordable school and just transfer at High School.”

“Then pay for it”

“I think a less luxurious house will be better than…”

“Then pay for it.”

“Then pay for it.” is such a glorious response to a man without much and has virtually no self-esteem. It is straight to the point and like a sword slashing a major artery, death is assured and painful.

When you know you don’t have enough liquidity to back up your arguments, it is likely that you will just fold, shut up AND NOT BE A PART IN ANY OF IT.

The solution I have to all of this is just to be quiet and not be a part of the process. If she want her dream house and burn all her savings on it because she is paying for it, then GO but ain’t gonna be a part of it.

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