Simply Me welcomes Milagros Gardose - Parpa, as she shares to us a story about LIFE
About MILAGROS GARDOSE PARPA the author, 32, married, BS in Social Work graduate. Medical Social Worker at Capiz Emmanuel Hospital, Roxas City
I was born and raised in my hometown, Iloilo City. Living together with my siblings and extended family, pretty much without my parents. My siblings and I were nurtured in a Christian family way of life. Where we put great importance to our relationship with God. Each of us has played our part in establishing & maintaining a harmonious relationship with one another. Being the eldest though, it sure does make me so cautious to commit even simple mistakes. As if there is no room for second chances or am I just being too hard with myself? I started being so tight and came to a point where there is no more room for me to breathe. I’m one hell of a serious gal! Even so, I love my family more than anything else, esp. my parents. For I know, they have gone through a lot in life to get us where we are today and who I am now.
The absence of my parents has played a vital part of who I am now. I and my siblings had gone through emotional wreckage as we grow-up, struggling to discover our own individuality. Each one of us has its own way of coping with the longingness and separation. Me, I was somebody who sulks into bitterness but chose to be sober about it. Focusing on what I believe I do well. However, my siblings were so confused and find themselves in undesirable circumstances in life. They’ve learned from it though. But as we go older and becoming more mature, we truly realized & appreciate the uniqueness of one another. Gone are the days where we fight against each other and blames the people all around us. Now, we are more eager to listen and be there for each other, without being judgmental. There is more acceptance & patience of who & what we really are, people having strengths & weaknesses. We learned to celebrate our differences. We are more loving and caring; I guess it only comes when we all have understood our family-our roots. After all, were all we’ve got!
When I decided to get married, I was swept away by my emotions. Though I chose to keep it to myself. I was so scared of jumping into the unknown. But finally was able to find the grit that I needed. As they say, taking risks makes us more mature and find responsibility on something. Along with getting married, came the decision of moving-out from my parent’s nests. It wasn’t at all an easy decision to make because it means being away from the people whom I spent almost 90% of my life. These people have been a witness of my best and worst self, but still accept me unconditionally. The fact that I will not be able to see and talk to them whenever I want to, gives me a bit of apprehension. And the rest is history.
Eventually, I joined my ex-boyfriend, now my husband, in a small town of Roxas City, in the Province of Capiz. Life here is much simple compared to where I grew up. But the hardest part of resettling is not so much on adjusting with the new kind of life, but finding myself in the middle of nowhere. No friends, no family, no support, no nothing! The first 2 years was the most excruciating, as I struggled with homesickness and succumbed to depression. I felt that part of me was missing. I was secretly feeling isolated and lonely, as if an essential part of me had been lost. All that was left were memories of them. Little did I realize that it is indeed a way or chance for me to create a new home.
In my journey of finding a new home, I was clouded by my feelings and eagerness to create the same kind of home where I came from. Being in a state of nostalgia hinders me from reaching out to people that is right in front of me. There seems to be a barrier which prevents me to see the beauty and newness of my new life. There were sleepless nights thinking and wondering of what my life might have been.
As I continue to battle the aloneness that keeps lingering, I realize one thing which greatly helped me move-on. The realization that I have to build something out from this beginning, that there is a need for me to extend myself to others and not the other way around. For every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end. I just knew that in finding a new home and if I really wanted to grow from this experience, I must be a part of something larger in my normal life. And this involves including other people in any way, even the strangest person. After all, this is the life I chose to live. I was really longing for a deep connection, but I just didn’t know where and how to start.
Another issue I wrestled with myself is the anonymity of friends. Coming to a new place means leaving my friends behind. In my late years as a teen, I struggled establishing a deeper relationship or friendship so to say. I’ve been to different places and have met people from different walks of life. Those experiences I have with people was probably one of the greatest lesson and amazing experience I’ve learned in my lifetime. However, in the road to self-discovery, there have been friendships which I honestly and regretfully taken for granted. I was so young & immature then to know what true friendship means. I guess the effort is not just enough to maintain such, but it takes consistency and going out of the way to be a real friend. But when the time I have already found great friendships in my college years, it was an exhilarating experience. It is experiencing human relationship in its best form, friendship.
I may not see my friends more often now, but I realized there were there for me whenever I need them. I still can find my way back to them and can always turn to them. The challenge for me now is to discover connectedness wherever I am and so in doing able me to bloom wherever I am planted. The gift of incredible connectedness is priceless and I am thankful that slowly I am embracing it.
I still long for my family and friends, no question about it. But the longingness goes beyond physical presence but rather the desire to share your life with and together enjoy the fullness of life. I took the liberty to better understand that I can still grow and be the best person I can be, apart from them. Where ever I am right now, I still carry good memories of them. And I thank God for those life changing experiences.
To Milagros Gardose - Parpa, thank you for sharing a very inspirational story
to us. Hope to hear more inspirational stories in your future blog post here.