Mother's day is different after your mother dies. Even if you have a family of your own, it can be difficult to fully engage with the day when someone important in your life is missing.
Like Edwin Aquino, a retired bank executive, longing for his mother who passed away last 2019. I am familiar with his pain because my mom passed away last December 2018. No matter how long it's been since you lost your mom, you can wake up on that day and feel the same hurt all over again.
I love how Edwin remembers his mom and their family's happy moments during Mother's day. From his childhood, how she guided them when they were growing up, the values they learned from her, to where they are now, his mom had a big part in all of those. Because of his mom, Edwin and his siblings are all achievers, through her guidance and discipline. By the way, his mom was a teacher at Torres High School in Tondo, Manila. She gave up her career to take care of them. Just like my mommy, she used to be a grade school teacher at St. Cyr Academy (now known as Lycee D' Regis Marie in Parañaque), she also gave up her career to focus on me and my siblings. Mothers are truly selfless. They worked hard to earn their diplomas and chase their dream careers but in the end, they choose their children and family.
Edwin also shares how his mother taught them the importance of learning how to save. They were taught to work hard not to just keep asking their parents for stuff and money. Edwin even collected empty bottles from the campus to bring back to their canteen in exchange for 5 to 10 centavos when he was in elementary. I remember my sisters sold chocolates in school to earn extra money and I washed my sister's socks for a few coins. Hehehe. Every centavo earned from hard work. Thanks to our mommy.
Edwin looks back and says his mother's greatest legacy is really how well she raised him and his siblings, helping them grow not only as successful persons in good standing but more importantly, shaping their values so that they know the importance of hard work, spending and saving wisely, and being kind to one another.
Before the community quarantines due to the pandemic, Edwin and his siblings and their respective families would go to Heritage Park in Taguig to celebrate their parents' lives and legacy. It's their opportunity to bond as a family and share precious family memories.
When his father passed away, they visited Heritage Park every weekend to spend time with their Daddy. But their visits diminished over time. When his mother passed away, the whole family would visit both their Daddy and Mommy in Heritage Park during their birthdays and death anniversaries.
This Mother's Day, the pandemic and existing travel restrictions will be keeping Edwin, his siblings, and their families apart. However, they draw strength and love from the memories they shared during their visits to their parents in The Heritage Park and this helps them keep hoping that one day, they'll have another sweet reunion as a family at Heritage Park once again.
No wonder why they feel happy when they are at The Heritage Memorial Park. Through my research, I learned how spacious and beautiful the place is. I dream of transferring my Mommy to The Heritage Memorial Park someday because she deserves the best even when she's no longer with us because of the life and legacy she gave us.