There are a lot of things I want (and should) be thankful for Mama.
Here are some of those:
1. Love for reading.
She used to buy me and my sister Sweet Valley High books and even went out of her way to cut out Lakbay Diwa (wandering thoughts) articles from a newspaper to encourage us to read. I used to see reading as a chore and remember that I didn’t enjoy it as much as I do now. I didn’t realize that her influence sticked with me until I entered college. The time spent by my classmates and dorm mates with the usual teenage stuff (e.g. drinking), I spent it by reading. My allowance was limited, so I resorted to borrowing books from my school’s library. Since my college days, reading has been my favorite pastime.
I learned a lot (e.g. stocks and minimalism) through reading, and that wouldn’t be possible if not for Mama.
2. Submissive wife.
Mama has been God’s instrument in opening my eyes on how to be a Godly wife as she was a submissive wife to Papa. I cannot remember even one instance where I saw or heard them fight. (Children are perceptive, and a fight between parents cannot easily escape them.)
Before getting married, I was already prepared to take on the role as a submissive wife because of Mama.
3. Financially independent.
Financial dependency is typical in the Philippine setting wherein parents are used to pass their responsibility (e.g. tuition fee of another child, utilities, etc.) to the child who experiences financial breakthrough. It’s also typical for the parents to expect (some even demand) that their child gives them a part of their income regularly.
In this age, being financially independent equates to having a million or more. But for me, Mama is financially independent whether she has a million or not (I know her financial status, so she’s more on the “not” side) because she was never dependent financially on her children. I learned from her (and Papa) that even with a small income, it feels way better to give than to receive. That, for me, is one way to describe financial independence.