Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Son's Request

I just read a heart-wrenching story about one of the victims of the heinous RCBC robbery-murder. The story was published in the Philippine Daily Inquirer and is one that should provoke parents, particularly fathers, to think about how they fulfill their responsibilities to their children.

The story is also online, http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/regions/view/20080529-139403/Sons-request-could-have-saved-bank-managers-life. The title, "Son's request could have saved bank manager's life", says it all.

Many times I have been faced with the same situation. Having four sons aged 17, 8, 5 and 1 1/2, it is not unusual for the first three to ask me to stay home or do something for them, in direct conflict with my responsibilities at work. I must admit that most of the time, I put my work ahead of my sons, telling myself that with my job as an elected official, I owe it to the People to prioritize them ahead of my family. It is said that such a sacrifice is part of being a public official.

There was a time when I brought work home, finishing paperwork at home so that I could do my constituency work during the day. It translated into diminished time with my kids, even though I was already at home. I would brush them aside or ask them not to bother me while I finished my paperwork. By the time I finished, they were already asleep.

I am thankful that with the preachings of our pastors and the lessons I learned from parenting seminars in our church, I realized that such a practice will have far-reaching effects on my sons. I made a decision then that I should stop bringing work home, because work belongs in the office, and the home belongs to the family.

Many people nowadays are career-driven, so much so that the family is relegated to the back seat, to be attended to only when it's convenient and "when there's time." But that shouldn't be the norm. We need to be reminded that first, we can always make time for things we want to do. THere will be no time for the family if you don't make time for them. Second, we should keep in mind that no one, in their death bed, ever said "I wish I spent more time in the office."

In fact, when someone is on the brink of death, family members are called in, even if they are halfway around the world. Some people's burials are even delayed until all family members come home to say their "last goodbyes". But come to think of it, it really is pointless to say goodbye to someone who will not hear your goodbye.

The lesson is not to reserve your time for the last goodbye but to savour every moment you can say hello. That way, there wouldn't even be a need to have a final, empty goodbye, but there will be all the reason to remember the precious times of togetherness.

I love my sons and I love my wife. Each day I wake up is an opporunity for me to make them feel my love for them and for them to love me back. But while I have stopped bringing work home, I am still guilty of sometimes brushing my loved ones aside when they ask for my time in favor of work. The story of the bank manager's son's request is a reminder that I should grab that golden opportunity God gives me everyday.

4 comments:

Karl M. Garcia said...

Hi Congressman!

I have learned about this blog , when you were linked by Manolo Quezon.
I am the son of Plaridel, I was a neighbor in BNS nakita ko na siguro yung eldest mo,88-93 kami nag stay sa bns. I never had the chance to meet you,sayang.Sa household nyo, brother in law mo lang na meet ko si Polans(don't know the spelling)
I will do some back reading of your blog.Nice to know of a congressman blogging.

regards.

Karl M. Garcia said...

Read the link, It is sad :(
Nakiusap pala sya sa Father nya na huwag pumasok.

Ganyan din tayo nung bata pa tayo,everytime na makidinig tayo duty ako, alam na natin hindi sila uuwi sa gabi na yon.

lalo ka na sa iba ibang lugar na asisgn father mo, hindi lang isang gabi na di kayo nagkita.

Ruffy Biazon said...

Karl,

Thanks for dropping by!

I left Navy Village in 1990 when I got married. I have such fond memories of that place which I called home in the first 21 years of my life.

Hope to meet you personally one of these days.

All the best!

Ruffy

withonespast said...

---

Hi again!

Please tell your Dad that he has been one of my inspiration when I was a high school student in Arellano, his story as a young man enduring poverty to finish school was inspiring. His my hero - he's admired and respected by everyone in the school.

Poverty, he proved - can be defeated.

God bless your family!