In 1999, my Papa and Mama went to Thailand. My Papa’s ‘pasalubong’ for me was a single set of tea cup and a saucer. I remember Mama saying that Papa handled it with utmost care all throughout their trip back to Manila. To date, this is the only piece of porcelain I own that moved with me whenever I transfered residence and it was never used, not once.
One of Mama’s favourite was fruitcake. I remember that for five Christmases, from 2007-2011, fruitcake would always be one of my pasalubongs for her from London. She would always have the sweetest smile everytime I would say, ‘Mama, fruitcake…’
Today, a friend gave me a fruitcake as pasalubong and told me that when I get home, I should drink tea and eat the fruitcake. It didn’t sound like a suggestion. There was power on the voice. I felt that it was a directive.
So when I got home, I was going to drink tea and eat fruitcake just because my friend said so. Until I noticed the tea cup that Papa gave me and felt that today is the time. For almost 17 years, today seemed to be the perfect time to use it.
Yes, it may just be drinking tea and having a slice of fruitcake and I should not give so much drama on it.
But hey! Parents – whether they are still around or have gone ahead of us, would always know and feel when their children needed them the most. Tonight, because of the tea cup and the fruitcake, time and again, Papa and Mama made their most loving presence felt.
Today, the Third Sunday of Advent, the Gaudete Sunday, I rejoice for the simple joy that the tea cup and the fruitcake brought to my heart. I rejoice for angels on earth called friends (some gives fruitcakes 😜). I rejoice for friends who became family, who treated me like part of their family. I rejoice for being blessed with opportunities. I rejoice for being cared for by many.
Today, I rejoice.