Orphans

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I am ambivalent about the morality of assisted reproductive technology (ART). That may be a reason why, despite being a fascinating scientific area of study, I chose not to go into Reproductive Endocrinology. More’s the pity as there are less than 200 board-certified reproductive endocrinologists in the Philippines, a nation of 120 million.

This article is not about doctor-shortage (although it is tempting to make it about that as I have a lot of rant on that topic as well), but rather this is my ruminations about parenting.

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The best and worst thing about having a progeny is being confronted with one’s mortality. It need not be a biological progeny: one can have a Grand Life Project — like maybe, “Giving Women the Right to Vote” (Alice Paul), or  “Ensuring Philippine Freedom From Colonial Spain” (Jose Rizal), or “Ending Marcos Tyranny” (Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino) etc etc.

If the point of living is to prepare us for dying then what better way to spend that prep time than to strive for something we are really passionate about. Life is to foreplay what orgasm is to dying.

Progenies remind us of death because they are what come after us — the orphans we leave behind.

It would be a wonderful universe if we leave our orphans with a situation that is better than what we had. Unfortunately, more often than not, the Universe  is cruel and uncaring. Our orphans are left destitute and scrounging for a place (any place) to exist. How many orphans have perished at the demise of their parents, I wonder?

We are puppies, kittens, cubs, nestlings, fingerlings, tadpoles, caterpillars — left behind by mothers and fathers who did not survive our births.

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Of course, it is a self-defeating attitude to resent a parent for not being strong enough to live. One is never ever ready to face a parent’s death. And a parent will never be able to protect its kid forever. That is Reality, sad but true.

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I was walking along a foreign road this morning, tears streaking down my face, remembering my mother. I would give an arm (the left one as I am right handed) to see her again.

Before she died I asked her plaintively what am I going to do when I have a kid of my own and she is not there. She said that I have my aunts to help me through that.

Well Mommy, that is an unsatisfying answer, I have expected something more Buddha-esque from you. To give you credit though, you have gone through more pain in your life than I can even imagine, so maybe I should cut you some slack for not being more philosophical.

While we are at it Mommy, let me remind you that being a doctor was never the greatest dream of my life. I can save a thousand bodies from dying an untimely death, but that will not satisfy my soul as much as making up stories can. Yes, I would rather be a professional liar than a professional healer. How’s that for a life goal, mother?

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Were you a good parent or a bad one?

(I would think that I have a right to judge you as I am your progeny. And since you are dead, eviscerating you in print won’t matter very much.)

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What makes a “good parent” versus a “bad parent”?

Should parenting subsume one’s life at the expense of everything else, the way women have done for centuries?

Why are biological progenies supposedly more acceptable than non-biological ones?

The world is overpopulated with humans so what is the point of having more of us?

Image from Pinterest

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Mommy I don’t want to sound nihilistic (although I know I am), but maybe your biggest mistake was having me?

I keep thinking that if I did not come along, you would have lived longer; the same way your older sister (the one who went to another country and shares my name) is now living her life to the fullest.

What was the point of having me Mommy?

Seriously … I cannot understand. That is my problem.

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Intergenerational Discord or Creative Destructions

 

It is a rite of passage to hate (at some point in one’s life) the people who brought oneself into this world:

Kids will hate their parents. 

And here are the examples:

….. Romeo and Juliet, the Montagues and Capulets being the “malaking hadlang” (great barrier) keeping them from enjoying their teenage romance,

…. Luke Skywalker (being a Jedi, he did try to manage to channel his hatred to more productive pursuits — like mastering his lightsaber),

…. Tony Stark, we all know Iron Man had a typical love/hate relationship with Howard, which proves that the law of physics saying that two similar electric charges will repel each other, is true

…. even Harry Potter, at some point in book 6, did not like his daddy, having found out that James used to be a toerag bully to Snape.

Knowing that our kids will hate us someday does not keep us off from procreating … and populating this already over-populated world with our minions, our genetic progenies, our shots at immortality.

This human propensity towards masochism (I mean how else can you describe a person who will willingly bring forth the seed of its own destruction?), a masochism that is tolerated because of vanity and narcissism (hello! parents, like god, want to create creatures in their own image!), does make the world more interesting.

As Joseph Schumpeter has so insightfully put it: capitalism is an exercise on creative destruction. Parenthood (I would imagine) is even more so.

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So, going back to my initial insight and the reason I wrote this post:  I have this  feeling that the American people will vote for Donald Trump; and the Filipino people will vote for Rodrigo Duterte for the same reason that a teenager keeps doing the things his/her parents advise him not to.

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Readings Lists:

http://www.vox.com/2015/12/1/9828086/donald-trump-

mediahttp://www.interaksyon.com/article/120949/editorial–tangina-this

http://archives.newsbreak-knowledge.ph/2005/12/05/guns-and-gold/

http://www.zoominfo.com/p/Joel-Brillantes/189440967

http://lumadsatagum.blogspot.com/2005/03/way-kurat-implicated-in-plot-to-kill.html

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/300423

https://www.hrw.org/news/2009/04/06/philippines-dismantle-davao-death-squad

Thirty-five

Germaine Greer, that controversial ’70’s feminist who wouldn’t give up, even now that she is in her 70’s, once said:

“The point of an organic family is to release the children from the disadvantages of being extensions of their parents so that they can belong primarily to themselves.”

Germaine Greer, The Female Eunuch, 1970

If I can find a copy of this is Booksale, it will go right to my TBR pile.

If I can find a copy of this is Booksale, it will go right to my TBR pile.

Miz Greer, much as I would like to agree, in principle, with your thesis, putting your point into practice would prick parents at their thorniest. Children, you see, are the emotional properties of their parents. And our parents have never; and will never (unless they are dead) let us forget that.

Mothers are the worst. Especially if you are a daughter. I cannot speak for the sons, but if they are there somewhere, I am sure they also have their gripes.

One’s mother almost died giving birth to you; so you owe her. For life.

Wait-just-a-fucking-minute!! I did not wish to be born … I was not exactly consulted if I wanted  to be brought into existence. So excuse me … if I resent your demands for my gratefulness. For this supposedly blessed gift called Life.

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For a woman turning 35 (one score plus one-and-a-half decade) years old, a milestone has been reached. In medical parlance, she has arrived at a quandary called, “elderly primipara/primigravida”.

The term “elderly primipara/primigravida” was invented, once upon a time, when obstetrics was populated by white-men-in-white-uniform. I think that its insertion into the lexicon of obstetrics residents was partly a warning sign to girls — get a man and have a baby before 35 or you will die.

Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain. A writer who died penniless. Just another chap who may just  be my role model.

Samuel Clemens, also known as Mark Twain. A writer who died penniless. Just another chap who may just be my role model.

In truth, and statistics will show (Mark Twain did say that there are lies, more lies, and statistics) that a lot of morbidities occur in women who gestate after 35. To wit: gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, gestational trophoblastic diseases, gestational hypertension, etc, etc.

I have come to believe that girls get knocked up in their teens because they were stupid; in their twenties because of peer pressure; and give in to maternal instincts in their 30’s because they fear death.

So Miz Greer …  a child is an extension of their parents. Your thesis is a fantasy. A wonderful fantasy, like The Lord of The Rings is wonderful, but a fantasy nonetheless.

But I love you, anyway 🙂

Nothing Personal II or A Tale of 2 Mothers & Daughters

There is a storm brewing just outside my window. The skies are as gray as the oatmeal  that has been stranded in my refrigerator for the past month.

And I still can’t get over my loathing at Jeane Napoles.

I’m sorry. I can’t help it. I detest her.

Here’s the truth: I think her sense of style is atrocious.

Chanel clutch? Herve Leger dress? YSL pumps? Who the hell does she think she is? Gossip girl?

Well guess what, Jeane, you’re not Blake Lively. You will never, in this lifetime, be Blake Lively. Being Paris Hilton is another matter.

Okay, Jeane apologists, you can throw your rotten tomatoes at me now. But I don’t care. Because I’ve been through worse.

Do you know the worst thing about you Jeane? Do you know where this rancid, putrid, decomposing wellspring of hatred of mine come from?

It’s because of your mother.

I spit at your face (of course this is the Internet, and hence; that statement is metaphorical) because of your mom.

I know, I know … you’re an innocent, yada yada. The sins of the mommys should not be passed on to their dear baby girls.

But humor me, will you Jeane. I’m sure you are a broad-minded girl so you won’t mind the next few paragraphs of pure rants.

I find it ironic that your mom is now embroiled in a scandal involving pork.

Guess what! My dear mother was into pork as well!

My mom was a butcher and a pork vendor. She would wake up at 2 am everyday to go to the slaughter-house. They would kill the pigs, scrape them clean; then she would sashay her tush into the public market where she sold pork every single day for 15 years.  I ate, drank, gotten schooled on, bought my clothes through – the profits of her pork.

Don’t you think this is poetic Jeane? We may be soul-sisters!

One difference, though. My mother is dead.

She died, when I was almost your age, of cancer. The cancer was probably due to eating too much pork fat. Boo hoo Mommy. I told you all  that pork was bad for your health. Ooops, sorry … no,  I wasn’t able to tell you that before you checked out. I always followed you and never lectured you; for I was always a respectful daughter. Much like Jeane Napoles, I would imagine.

Oh Jeane, on the other hand … I also envy you.

I envy you your perfect cleavage and your long long legs and your French posse – Chanel, Christian Lacroix and Cristian Loubotin. You do know how to pick them, my dear. I can barely pronounce them!

Call me a crab Jeane. After all, we Pinays, like our brother Pinoys,  are expert on crabs.

But one thing I can say for myself, I am not obscene.

So tell me, what can be more obscene than this:

Pictures were adapted from http://jeanenapoles.tumblr.com/

Pictures were adapted from http://jeanenapoles.tumblr.com/

 with this:

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Word count: 492

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I don’t want to impose myself on others so I try to keep my posts short ( < 500 words) and (I sure hope so) sweet Anastasia Christina – incorrigible blogger

A Mother’s Love

You have to give it to Mrs. JL-N. She really loves her daughter.

Porsches as birthday gift, an 80 million pesos luxury apartment in Hollywood California, designer-label bags, shoes, clothes and accessories.

Her baby girl sure is living the life. Baby girl is an aspiring fashion designer. Given the way she walked the runway in this video, maybe she is even an aspiring model!

Her social media accounts give ample documentation of her passions and sense of style.

Is she a Paris Hilton-wannabe? Ok, I need to see the sex video to judge.

Of course Mrs. JL-N did go on-cam and said that their wealth was obtained through honest means. I am just a little confused. In one interview, it was coal export and trade, then there is another that said it’s fishing, and that Mrs. JL-N’s maternal family really came from the “landed old-rich”. Hmmm, is it me or do I smell something fishy?

Whatever! It is without a doubt that Mrs. JL-N is the most devoted, generous, and loving of all mothers. And she’s alive! Unlike my mom who is dead.

So, to J, who just turned 23, and was so sexy with her perfect cleavage and plunging necklines, dancing the night away on her birthday party:

…. I hope you will have a good night’s sleep baby girl …

… I hope you will never feel how it is to be hungry …

… I hope you will have a long and happy life. …

… filled with love and all sorts of goodies …

I hope you never have to experience what more than 1/4 of this country is currently suffering from.

In a world where a few get so much and the multiple dregs of humanity get so little, my puny mind cannot get around at the fact that your Mom loved you so much, she let you have that Chanel bag, Herve Leger dress and YSL sandals when these little girls had this:

Random Poem (8 July 2013)

TO THOSE WHO CALL THEMSELVES PARENTS:

You who brought me out into this godforsaken world

You who calls yourself whatever it is you call yourself

You whom I look a lot alike

With your nose that turns and your mouth that squirm

And your valleys and mountains that weep

Know that I hate you

Know that I curse you

You with your megalomaniac desire to live on

Through the ages through me

Know that right now I am now killing you

With the same knife that pierces my heart.

I die with you.

How do I find my salvation when everyday I am dying and dying and dying and dying

and dying.

And you don’t know it.