hands across the sea

My nephews just left the homeland two month ago to join their estranged father in Canada. Only now leaving a few of my immediate family the joy to come home to. At their early 20's, my nephews have been delightfully uprooted to brace a new life, a sparkling future and embrace a culture seemingly unknown to them. All that excitement of discovery and independence. What adventure! 

It was never a thought years ago that I would have a family scattered around the world. I imagined mere phone calls and a short drive to have family sunday lunches. Or a birthday celebration and Christmases would mean a nice family gathering. My family is already small as it is and having my mother and two brothers thousands of kilometers away between all of us, each in our own corners, the void resonates even in our long distance phone calls. "I don't really see my parents and they just live a few kilometers from us!" a friend laughingly said. It made me wonder if I'd do the same if I have lived a few minutes from mine.

There are thousands of us who rely on this amazing technology to bridge the distance but it is never the same. Distance, and time, creates a gap. No matter how updated we are from afar. But even how psychotic our families are, this gap disappears everytime we come home. It is the only comfort of being home, our families. The one thing that never change.

Whatever it is that made us move to places, a job, a better life, or even love, we all know how it is to endure this absence. And not a lot of us even has the privilege to come home as we wish. But we get by and cherish more the importance of family. Especially now with my mother, who has been literally alone for two months now back home. "No more black headed big rats to finish all the food in the house," she half-laughingly told me. I am hoping to give her my best Christmas gift ever this year, to surprise her by being home for the holidays. The only bright side with having a few family left back home is there is less worry about pasalubongs (meeting gift), and more quality time with each of them.

It is already hard to leave home but sometimes, it's much more difficult for those who are left behind. My nephews after a month of arriving Toronto already have jobs & basketball friends. Settling and integrating well and it is my only hope that they will keep in their hearts to remember the joys of family, in this wide distance.      


From Manila to Paris, then to Marseille & to the Côte d'Azur, now in Singapore, clinging to a map of three worlds, where everything becomes all relative.


  1. Ahhh! So excited about your mom's reaction to you showing up at her doorstep on Christmas... yay to long haul flights!

    1. I know! I really hope to push through with this plan. Sure do wish teleporting exists, I'm more & more dreading long flights!

  2. I think you should go home more often. And when you're home you can bring Tita with you back to tFrance sana :D ! I'm happy to know you'll come home for Christmas ;) !

    1. My mom's motion sickness is worse than yours, Haze! I just can't bear to let her go through that sick feeling. Dapat 10 years ago ko sya pinapunta :(