There are a lot of things that I got from my mother- her skin, curly hair, eyes maybe, perhaps even my nose. Some people used to say that I also inherited some of my mother’s habits, although I am not sure what these habits are (or those habits were). Maybe it was because I was always with my mother.
For me, the biggest and definitely the best thing I got from my mother was her wanderlust nature, her never ending taste for adventure.
As the bunso, or the youngest in our family, my mother used to bring me in her office, and during those times, she would always tell me her stories about the places she went to, and the people she met along the way. She would show me her photos, and would tell me that when I grow up, I should also take a lot of photos every time I go to different places so that I would be able to preserve those memories.
Although my mother’s work allowed her to travel to different places, her work was not as fancy as you may think it was. In fact, it was the exact opposite. She used to work in a Non-Government Organization (NGO) that aims to uplift the lives of the rural poor, particularly the farming households. She used to go to communities, teaching them how to help themselves – capacity building in the grassroots.
This was the reason why, unlike most of my peers, I dreamed of working in a development institution. When I was in college, I started building this dream. I took the chance to be part of the volunteer corps of our university, where I got the opportunity to serve as a learning facilitator to students in some rural communities. Then, when I graduated, I started working in a development institution, where I trained women, especially mothers, in various livelihood and enterprise development activities. It was really fulfilling especially since I needed to visit at least four different provinces per week!
Presently, I am working in the university where I took my undergrad and my graduate studies, doing both research and extension activities.
During our entire lifetime, there will always be someone who will inspire us to travel, to go out of your comfort zone, to see the world, and to meet new people.
For me, that is my mother.
Happy Mother’s Day to you and to all the wonderful moms out there.