Cj was eleven months old when I flew him to the Philippines to stay with my mother while I was finalizing my divorce. For almost two years I was playing hard ball with his dad, you know the fight over child custody that we usually hear surrounding divorces. While I was meeting lawyers and sorting documents I tried my best to play my role as a mom every chance I get in spite of the distance. Summers were those chances.
With the help of my family, I was able to enjoy those summers with Cj. We were almost always out of the house even if we didn’t go very far out of town. The heat drove us outdoors:
This is Cj’s favorite part of the yard. Guess why… because this is where he chases our neighbor’s chickens off. I love this part of the yard too because it’s where I watch him discover creatures around him. He hops after a frog and says, “Mom, kee-kith.” My eyebrows meet in the middle, “what’s kee-kith, Ceej?” He repeats with emphasis, “kee-kith!” and looks at me like I’m so boring I don’t know what a cricket is!
Then everybody heads off to the beach. While the “olds” are eating and chatting the day away, I try to play with my little guy. He has a different idea though. He spotted someone and began to walk into her direction.
Earlier I told his yaya to back off and let me be – a mom to my son. But she seemed to have won some measure of CJ’s affection and he’s drawn to her most of the time. So before I got completely kicked out of the scene I used what little brains I had left in the midst of those roller-coaster summers – divert Mr. Yaya-Friendly’s attention to myself. It could be a self-satisfied smile on my jealous face; but for heaven’s sake I only had summer in the entire year to feel mommy moments that I can call exclusively my own, so here goes: