The Return of eLf ideas

ideas of an eLven being in Canada

Sunday, February 05, 2006

If Patience is measurable, then

February 5, 2006

"Pa, kakain na 'ho."

"Ayaw ko!"

"Pa, kelangan n'yong kumain. Sige na, para sa inyo rin 'yan."

"Sinabi nang ayaw ko e! Wag mo nga akong pakialaman."

"Pa, kakain na ho."

"Ano ba! Pabayaan mo na lang akong matulog."

"Hindi ho p'wede. Dapat kayong kumain kahit konti lang."

"P'tang inang buhay 'to! Patayin mo na lang ako! Hindi mo ko mapipilit."

"Pa, kakain na ho."

"Nagsisisi ako at pinapunta pa kita rito sa Canada. Wala kang utang na loob. Pabayaan mo 'ko sa gusto ko! Ba't mo ba 'ko pinakikialaman. Kundi dahil sa 'kin, hindi ka makakapunta ng Canada. Pinag-aral ko kayong magkakapatid. Pinagamot kita nu'ng nagkasakit ka. Mali ako na pinapunta pa kita rito."

"Pa, alalahanin n'yo, tao rin lang ako...nauubos rin ang pasens'ya ko...konti na lang, patid na ko. Wag n'yo ubusin ang pasens'ya ko... Kumain na kayo...."

How many men can expose to the world at large their ugliest, weakest, and most fragile state? Boys don't cry? Perhaps. But don't tell me men do not, for I do.

If Patience (P) is measurable and, say, My Total Patience (MTP) is set to, of course, 100 %, then My Current Patience (MCP) is running low = 10 %. Therefore, I hope that this remaining iota of MCP can still get me through the rest of the waiting process for my immigrant visa.


I'm scheduled to have my x-ray examination on February 16, as a requirement for my application for permanent-resident status. If the result is favorable (please, Deity of Hope, make it so!), Immigration will grant me an immigrant visa in April or May. This means that I will no longer be contracted as Grandfather's live-in caregiver. It means that I will then be able to pursue whatever career I choose. I will no longer be a prisoner of the house. My hands will no longer be bound with those of Grandfather's. I can now move on with my own life...the Life I offered...the Life they curtailed...a new, good life I have been looking forward to since the day, in 2003, I left my homeland. A better life I believe I deserve. The Life I will finally reclaim!


What will happen to Grandfather then, in case he's still alive when long-awaited Freedom arrives?

In mathematical parlance, I'm a believer of estimation, rounding-off, infinity, etc. To me, nothing is exact; no one remains the same from birth to death; no thing is left unchanged from creation to destruction. Parallel lines are parallel only in short distances. But, only one thing is sure.

Grandfather will go to a nursing home. Why? Simple. No one can ever replace me, considering all the factors that have surrounded my situation. No one will give up his job or her schooling OR his Freedom just to stay in the house and take care of a stubborn and pesky 90-year-old elderly virtually twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week...without salary nor regular allowance nor words of appreciation, consolation, or endearment.

Why not employ a daytime home-care attendant then?

Cannot be.

Who will replace the home-care attendant during nighttime? Who will stay awake practically the entire wee hours to accompany the old man to the washroom or just to check once in a while if he is still breathing or already as stiff as a pepperoni stick? Who will take all the old man's swords and stabs of hatred and resentment? Who will suffer the curse of having to stay almost wherever and whenever the old man stays?


Where's my conscience?

I don't deserve to be asked with this question.

I have been carrying the burden of having to take care of Grandfather for two years and six months now. Gratis! Is this not enough? Will I be buried eternally in the so-called debt of gratitude? What then of my sacrifices? my pains? heartaches?


I hope all of you will forgive me for I have lied.

I have to confess something serious.

I am not really an eLf. I am also a human like all of you. So, I too lose patience. I too get angry. I too keep ill feelings. I too utter curse words. I too cry and despair. And I too can leave a mess and move on with my own life without considering what other people will say of my decisions.


What then of Grandfather?

I no longer care what happens next. Really. By then, I will have done my unfair share.

I am just a grandson--only one of Grandfather's twenty-two grandsons.

I now leave Grandfather's fate to his children--Tito Jun and Tito Bobby in California, Tita Mely in British Columbia, my mother in the Philippines, Tito Renyboy and Tito Gerry here in Manitoba.

I am not a hero. I am not a saint. I am not a savior. I am not (yet) immortal. In fact, as I confessed, I am not an eLf.

I am just a grandson who made a deal--take care of Grandfather for two years in exchange of a better life afterwards. Or, in the words of a dear friend: "Eat shit now, taste the candy later."

And the end of the deal is near. I will no longer detail who gave more and who gave less.

The important part is, I will have soon fulfilled my part of the deal. I will have done my part, regardless if I gave less or more.


Where's my conscience?

I will repeat, please don't ask me that question. I don't deserve it.


I love to see what Grandfather's children will do when I'm gone, what their plan for him would be.

As for me, I have new plans of my own. I have better things to do...this time, for me and only myself.


Where's my conscience?

Please! I said don't ask me that question.

MCP is running low.


  • At Monday, February 06, 2006 3:28:00 AM, Blogger Jennie said…

    I say only this. For you to take care of your grandfather for 2 years without even an utterance of the word "thanks" is bound to make you the king of patience in my book. The elderly, unfortunately, cannot be changed of their ways. We sometimes have to adjust to them. But then, I am sure that everything is bound to change for the better. Karma works that way. No need to feel guilty. You have done more than your fair share as a grandson. I applaud you for that.

    Best of luck and I know you'll get that visa :)

  • At Monday, February 06, 2006 5:48:00 PM, Blogger Jayce Cortez Jacinto said…

    You have done things greater than what any grandson may endure even under circumstances more endurable than yours.
    Your conscience is there, just with the fact that you ACTUALLY take care of your grandfather. You can always leave him be as he wants it, yet you persist. The fact that you think of his best interests by placing him in a round-the-clock care home once you have the chance to pursue and claim what's rightfully yours speaks of conscience.
    C'mon eLf.Just a little bit more...

  • At Monday, February 06, 2006 7:08:00 PM, Blogger vayie said…

    I was actually speechless while I'm reading this. Though I haven't been there, I perfectly understand your plight. You've raised all the issues in such an honest way and I admire you for that. I know some people might say that you have to have more, more (how long, really?) patience because your Grandfather is already senile and not on his right senses. But I know how his words can stab you right through. Words peppered with hatred are indeed very hurtful.

    I can only tell you one thing, carry on, just a little more. If my words didn't give you much comfort, remember that boys do cry sometimes...

  • At Tuesday, February 07, 2006 6:10:00 AM, Blogger leidivine said…

    After all is said and done, don't forget the adjective.

    You are a SURVIVING eLf.

  • At Tuesday, February 07, 2006 10:51:00 AM, Blogger Alain Edbert Dizon said…

    You have defined "patience" in all its form and glory...I could never have that kind...the one that kicks you even if your on the ground tasting dirt...the one that strips you with almost nothing...the gnashing of the teeth until all that is left are bleeding gums (sorry for the pun...)...the things we do just to hold on to a dream...keep on holding even if whats left is just a finger...

  • At Tuesday, February 07, 2006 12:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    Like what I've said before, I have been through this as well and it is never easy. There are no shortcuts through this....please remember that there are still angels watching over you and even commiserating with you in all of this agony and pain....there is no shame in crying because that is what being human is all about.

    When all hope is gone then all that is left is bitterness. I know, I've been there but again, please remember, what evolves out of it is love, rekindling and understanding.

    There are things that are inexplicably deplorable and depressing but hope will always spring eternal.

    skyray is love,

    PS--me, and all your friends will be there for you and are praying for you.

  • At Wednesday, February 08, 2006 8:57:00 AM, Blogger ~yellow~ said…

    hey..glad to "see" you again. i missed you. the TOO nice alf is okay, but you...the braver alf (not to mean rash or irresponsible) is a refreshing "sight"


  • At Wednesday, February 08, 2006 10:15:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    i like d pic.

  • At Friday, February 10, 2006 5:05:00 AM, Blogger leidivine said…

    wala lang...

    think of the bright side... think ~yellow~ fairy... :-)

  • At Friday, February 10, 2006 5:12:00 PM, Anonymous kimmy said…

    kuya, whatever it may be...i'm so proud of you...always remember that. "WE" are proud of you.

    You've done everything,it's enough. Let "OTHERS" do their part! Be strong, don't let your feelings put you down.

    And I know that you'll get the visa...just pray..and I also do pray for you kuya...

    I love u..always remember that.
    Miss you so much...

    ****i don't wanna see you cry...di bagay!=)****

  • At Thursday, February 16, 2006 3:46:00 AM, Blogger eLf ideas said…

    Ang galing talaga ng maraming kaibigan. Kahit gaano ka-bad trip ang araw at kalungkot paminsan-minsan, konting salita lang galing sa mga kaibigan e natatanggal na agad ang pagka-desperado.

    Friends are really the pillars and the lampposts of one another.

    Salamat sa inyong lahat--Jennie, Jayce, Vayie, Lei, Alain, Giselle, at Butch.

    At syempre sa aking pinaka,a,aha;, Cha, at sa pinakamaganda kong kapatid, Kim.

    Di bagay umiiyak? Hehehe. Sawa na 'kong magpa-cute sa pictures e. Hehehe.


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