The reason why Filipinos have such close family ties is because each generation is in one way or another completely dependent on one another. In most Filipino families, the primary caregivers of children, in addition to the parents, are the grandparents.
This is still the case for most families but it’s not as predominant as before. Which is why some of us have to look for nannies or consider working at home.
This was the case when I was pregnant with my daughter. My in-laws were both working at that time and my mother was on the other side of the country. The grandparents on both sides wanted to spend more time with my daughter but they were all too busy with their own jobs.
When we moved to Davao, the situation was reversed. My mother went back to
school and my in-laws, now retired, was on the other side of the country.
My mom and in-laws may not be able to take care of my daughter full-time but I know they’re often willing to help when able. That’s why, when we went back to Manila for a week-long vacation, I took advantage of my in-laws willingness to take care of my little girl and was able to keep working full-time that week.
As wonderful as it was to have grandparents that are always ready and willing to take care of my child, I try not to take advantage of it too much. First and foremost, they all have their own lives, plans and activities everyday. I’m extremely thankful every time they rearrange their lives to accommodate my daughter. I want the time they have with their grandchild to be a joy and not a chore. So taking care of their daughter should be a break from the day-to-day and not their day to day.
So to my mom and my in-laws, thank you so much for all those days that you took care of my baby for me. You have no idea how thankful and touched I am every time I see you welcome her with open arms. I don’t think I would have survived the past 3 years of motherhood without your support. I know we sometimes clash but I understand and I know you only want what’s best for your grandchild. My daughter is extremely lucky to have the most loving grandparents who spoil her rotten and tease her incessantly.
Thank you, thank you, thank you…