Now that they are both gone and went with the Lord, I remember many things about them, all the wisdom and advice I've heard and the good practices I've seen. One of the most impactful memories I stored in my heart is their huge faith in God. I can vividly recall when we prayed on one Christmas Eve because we didn't have any food or gifts at that time and they claimed that that will be the last time we celebrate Christmas with nothing because God will provide, which eventually happened; we were blessed and prospered the year after that and year after year. Another is their belief and hope for a better tomorrow. It was from them that I always hear "tomorrow is an opportunity to get better, strive harder, exceed, excel, be a better version of yourself." It was from them that I heard, "stop complaining, the pain will be gone tomorrow." It was from them that I always look forward to something better, more rewarding, results of hard work. Dad said, that is not good enough. "HINDI PWEDE ANG PWEDE NA!" The standards keep on getting higher kaya when when we reap the rewards, it was always sweet victory. Mahirap pero sulit. Ganun ako pinalaki. Not dependent, not complacent, not mediocre. Ako lang ata sa aming magkakapatid ang maagang naexpose sa hirap kaya ganun na lang din ako naging ka-ambisyosa. Imagine, ang bata bata ko pa, ang dami ko nang ginagawang chores mula 8 years old, mamalengke, mag igib ng tubig, magtanim ng kangkong, kamatis, mag alaga ng baboy, manguha ng kohol, maglaba at mamalantsa ng lampin, maghugas ng plato sa dilim hahaha. Ang hirap na masaya kasi kapag natapos ko lang ang mga yun chaka ako nakakapaglaro, so dapat mabilis kumilos para me reward, maglaro sa bukid. Ang saya saya! Mahirap pero rewarding. Daddy and Mama trained me to be independent, to strive more, accomplish more to have a better life. Work, play, study - cycle repeats. By the end of my elementary days, I knew the hardships paid off. But that didn't stop me from striving, setting the standards higher. It went on until high school, college, working part time while schooling. By this time, my high standards were established and mama and dadilo wanted it re applied with my siblings. I hoped and prayed that whatever they saw in us, they will continue. We started on the right path we all worked part time while in school, we finished and got our degrees and worked. Eventually, we started our own families, had our own children.
Why am I saying this now? What is it for me, for my children, nieces and nephews and the younger generation? True, past is past but we can learn from it. There were so many good learnings from the past that we can use and follow. Maybe it was the thought that I don't want them to experience what I had, I let the children live comfortably. I am having those regrets, I wanted to continue what Mama and Dadilo started in me with my children, my nieces and nephews because I believe and could still hear Dadilo saying "Hindi pa pasado yan, magaling ka, believe that you can do better than that!" It is true, we can continue with their legacy - to be an achiever, not to quit but to work harder, to accomplish more, to find how and become a champion. We are all blessed with skills and talents that we don't want to get wasted. I hope the younger generation - our children will realize this that even if they can afford not to do chores, or be happy with the grades they've achieved, they will do more, be more, be of significant value. I hope my children while imagining me in the middle of rice fields carrying water containers, will realize that Mama, Dadilo and I worked hard to be where we are today, that they will continue the legacy of faith, hope and belief in hard work and growth mindset. Not complacent, mediocre or no drive at all. That is not what God wants us to do. He has great plans for us, plans to give us hope and a future. Only then, we can truly say that we are Mama and Dadilo's offsprings because we are achievers and always aim to be the best versions of ourselves.