Acceptance is the First Step.

In a world full of prejudice and judgements, being a lesbian mom has been a constant struggle. There will always be social stigma, whether recognized or not. Getting used to the odd stares, the second look, the puzzled faces and the raised eyebrows took time – ’twas actaully longer than expected.

I “came out” around 2 years ago and friends – most especially LUGs (Lesbians Until Graduation)- seemed to not understand who I am right now. They’d think that this is merely a phase like what had happened to them in the past. It is simply an illusion, they emphasize. There were some hopes that I’d get back to my “heterosexual self ” and live a so-called “normal” life. Some even believed that my faith was not strong enough that I gave in to what God has “not” planned for me.Image I know for a fact that I am a well-rounded person and I have not lost faith on my Creator.

Sadly, I did that most of my life.  Was hiding in a closet – confused and had no one to talk to about how it is being gay. It seemed like I was in a box of restrictions, trying not to even entertain “gay thoughts”. I have had major crushes on women (Angelina Jolie tops my list *wide grin*) but it stops there. I thought that lesbianism is merely a state of mind that can easily be changed and liking women is not more than admiration. I even have had 2 lady “suitors” back in college but did not entertain them because of fear. I had to, simply because I want to be accepted, to be loved.

Don’t get me wrong. My Mom loves me so much and so did my Dad (God bless his soul). But being gay is utterly different.

There is a certain level of tolerance a parent has to meet in accepting a gay child of who he or she is.

Why do I know this? Because I am a parent myself. I have learned throughout this maternal journey that major adjustments are needed to accept who your child really is. In my opinion, it will be a lie if parents do not have expectations of their children. Acceptance of meeting that expectation and having a different outcome is a challenge in itself. What more when having a gay child?

Now that I am already grown with a lovely partner and 2 beautiful children, I suppose my Mom accepted me. Not entirely, but the support is there.

I think what really helped is my self-acceptance. I owe it to God and my partner. He gave me her  and she helped me go through this journey of acceptance and self-love. She taught me lessons about what reality offers us. It is indeed a matter of choice. That choice of accepting who you are over what society expect you to be.

Now, I want to impart this to our children and our family. Acceptance has played a major role in our lives. The fact that my eldest son accepted me of who I am is one of the most amazing things that had happened in my life. I am praying that I could do the same for him and for our daughter too.

Having a great support system is a big plus. They boost you up simply because they believe in you. And I am just so grateful I have that.

Acceptance is not merely approval. It entails consent, agreement, admission. With acceptance, faith follows. A strong belief that one can make things happen. No matter who you are.

And honestly, if I haven’t accepted myself, I should’ve merely existed in a lie.

May 17th is one of our BIG days!

We highly support the International Day Against HOmophobia & Transphobia (IDAHOT) for the 17th of the 5th.

After all the ups and downs of being out of the closet, here we are together – building a family of our own in a country that has not recognized us as a ” basic unit of society” just yet.

And yes, it’s all worth the fight!

PLMIdahot2013

I am personally happy that our company is open to diversity and that they support us.

So, how do you celebrate IDAHOT in your area? 🙂 Would love to hear from you.

**FULL CREDITS to the following sites for the logos used:
http://www.planevada.org/
http://www.canadianfamily.ca/

It’s me again, corporate world!

It’s been my second month since I got back to work from a 78 day-maternity leave. I had to keep up a lot from my absence, prepping myself up with all the changes and ensure that I start the year right by stepping up my career discipline.

With that in mind, I want to share with you some personal tips on how to gear up before the big day (which worked for me!):

1. DO YOUR HOMEWORK.
Involve yourself once in a while by checking your corporate mails. A tiny effort makes a long way as this helps you to still be in the loop. My frequent checks have helped me with minor adjustments. I may not be as knowledgeable as I used to be but this habit made me remember most parts of what I was doing. Usually at my job role, we are given a week to warm up from a long leave but I just gave myself 2 days and was getting back on track (although practice gives your “groove ” back).

2. PRACTICE COMPARTMENTALIZING.
Although being a mom (or a parent) in itself is a tough job, if you are a career person, you have to exert yourself a little more. As my mum would say, we have different “folders” in our lives to open and close – folders for family, work, self, others – and this is where compartmentalizing kicks in. Compartmentalizing is a process where one segregates oneself from one folder to the other. It helps us prioritize and be more focused on one task at a time. It will not only aid you from separation anxiety from your little angel, as an example, but it also makes you more efficient in finishing your tasks at work. It lessens the load and stress when dealing with issues. In short, do not bring your personal issues at work and vice versa.

One of my mum’s greatest advices is to open and close each of our life folders at a certain point in life. For example, close your family folder once you leave the house and open your work folder once you’re at work.

3. REWARD YOURSELF WITH “ME-TIME” .
If there’s one thing I see in mothers is that most of us tend to “forget” ourselves as we subconsciously live a selfless life for our children and families. We should be reminded that we are human and our needs (even some of the “wants”) are met. So give yourself a big pat on the back by treating yourself with a well-deserved time-off. Give yourself a makeover or a spa treatment. It doesn’t have to be expensive though. If you’re tight with your budget, there’s heaps of homemade skin or body treatment for you to enjoy. If you’re a certified bookworm, get back to your unfinished readings for a couple of hours perhaps. The key is to ask help from a loved one, whether it be your spouse/partner, your mom or a sibling, and have them take care of your little one for a few hours. This gives you time to refresh yourself for the big transition to “work reality”.

4. LIST WHAT YOU WANT FOR YOUR CAREER.
List what you wanted to have in your career and steps to achieve it. Goal-setting keeps you on your toes and having them written down on a journal (or on your smartphone) reminds you to be on the right track. I keep a planner and use my Android app as reminders (I personally use the Any.Do app. It not only keeps a record in my email, it also gives encouraging messages once I am done.)

Keep in mind to set an achievable timeframe and steps, then work on it, woman!

5. GET LOADS OF SLEEP.
Sleep as much as you can. Maximize your time to give your body its much needed rest as our body repairs itself whilst sleeping. It’s tried and tested that people are more productive and efficient after a good 6-8 hours of sleep as the brain and body works better . I’m cranky when I only get 3-4 hours sleep and I am working on this, too.

6. PRAY.
Faith uplifts the soul and prayer is everything. Pray for the Lord’s guidance, wisdom and strength to help us go through this journey. Pray with gratefulness as we are blessed with these opportunities of being a great mum AND providing food to our family’s tables. There is indeed power in prayer. Keep trusting God as He knows what’s best for us. Start everything with an open heart for Him.

I hope these will somehow equip you to get back on your career track.

Thanks for reading and have fun.

P.S.

We’d love to hear from you so please let us know what you think… 🙂

Today we went to our nearby Puregold store.

We were recognized and remembered by employees in no less than 3 stores inside. First, we had lunch at Mang Inasal, where the lady at the counter commented how big our daughter has grown. She said she remembers us and even pointed to where we liked to sit. Then we went to the computer store, CDR King, where the lady at the counter also talked to us and said she remembers my partner going there when she was still pregnant. Same thing happened in the hardware store. 

Well, we gotta admit, lesbians & lesbian couples are quite eye catchers in a crowd, much more a lesbian family. It kind of warms my heart to know that there are people looking at us and (hopefully) cheering us on in this journey we chose. It’s also heart-melting to realize that that store is a huge part of our baby’s life and that there are people there who has seen her ever since she was still a baby.

Purples

image

My wife S and son bought me these beautiful purple blooms when we went out to the grocery store a week ago. I’m so impressed with such sweet, unexpected gesture in thanking me for being a wonderful mum. It’s these little things I find great fulfillment – especially when being appreciated by people I love most.

How do your family thank you for being that lovely person as you are? Please share them with us on the comments below. 😉

Starting 2013 with a Baby Dedication on a Budget ;)

It’s 2013. A new year for new beginnings, hope and changes.

Forgive me for taking almost forever to post. It really took some time for us to settle things – from the holiday trips to our little angel’s dedication – hence, the lag. And speaking of our child’s dedication…I’d love to share with you our way of celebrating it. I’d say that it was intimate and ’twas organized with our hearts put into it.

We celebrated the event that is easy on the pocket and a little…hmmm…creativity.

Would you believe that we spent roughly around Php 4000 for 15-20 pax of the said event? Originally, we had estimated that we will have 40 people for brunch (this just shows that erm…we only have a few friends combined as a couple. Haha!). Then it was down to 25-30. Mind you, these were our family, the godparents, and closest friends – those wonderful people who have been very supportive of us in both our relationship and family as a whole.

For our dedication ceremony we opted for Alabang New Life Christian Center located in the heart of Alabang Hills Village, Muntinlupa City. What I personally like about this church is that it was the church I grew up with AND it showcased an aesthetically beautiful building. We were overwhelmed with joy that the church did not only have the warmest people, they also gave us a cute Dedication Bible for us to keep!

GEDC0196plm

Of course, there will always be food. We initially chose Shakey’s for brunch but alas, the nearest branch in Alabang Town Center could not accommodate 30 guests and it’s quite a walk for us to get there from the church. My mum suggested Chic-Boy, a restaurant that boasts Cebu-style roasted chicken and grilled pork. Since the establish is almost a hop away, we went for it and booked the place. We were blessed though that there were no additional fees for the place. Reservation/Downpayment fee of Php 3,000 is required though to ensure that costs have been covered for operational expenses. Take note, the downpayment is consumable and you may order prior the event to avoid hassles in waiting. The menu we chose was CB-7 Rice All You Can Kumpleto Meal, which consists of Cebu Lechon Manok, Cebu Lechon Liempo, Ginisang Kangkong and Rice – indeed a gastronomic delight. To top it off, we also had 3 orders of Lechon Sisig, Halo-halo and an unlimited refill of iced tea. This costs us barely around Php 3,500. Not bad, eih?

YUM!

YUM!

Lastly, our little souvenirs. Although it is not imperative for us to give souvenirs, I wanted our guests to remember this special occasion in a techie and functional way. We got Micro SD Card Readers from CD-R King,  added some ribbons and a cutesy photo of our darling with a thank you note.

souvenirscollage

Hope this gives everyone a fresh idea. More photos after the jump!

‘Till our next! 😉

 

Our cherub's couture look

Our cherub’s couture look

PinayLesbianMums' family outfits <3

PinayLesbianMums’ family outfits ❤

We walk through life one day at a time.

Due to the festivities, it may take quite some time for us to post. We have to keep up in showcasing our little bundle of joy to both my family and hers for Christmas.

We headed South of the Metro  to be with my mum and brothers this past weekend and for Christmas morn, we headed up north to spend time with her family. Although I’d admit that it’s tiring us, nevertheless, it makes us more fulfilled to share precious moments with family.

The packing and organizing got us crazy since most of the stuff are our baby’s and we only had a few clothes to squeeze in our luggage – which I shall post later.

For the meantime, let us enjoy the festivities and our family wishes you all a beautiful Christmas and a lovely Boxing Day too!

CHEERS!

Hospital Papers for an Expecting Lesbian Couple

Domestic partnership as a lesbian couple is not recognized in the Philippines. Pursuing it takes a lot of documentation (and guts) to ensure that your loving partner is “legal” to support you no matter what. For instance, in childbirth, the State does not recognize a gay partner as your spouse or a parent to your little bundle of joy.

During my pregnancy, I scavenge through the ins and outs of the world wide web. I came across a potential document that can back us up in authorizing my partner in any medical decisions should the need arises. I am referring to a Medical Power of Attorney. I just had to make sure that everything is stated there and the parameters of her decisions and mine. Of course we had to sit down and discuss on the validity, the conditions of where my organs can be donated to in case I don’t come out alive from the operating room, and even having my partner as the direct person to be informed of in any medical procedures and decisions. We had this notarized to ensure that this is legal.

On top of that, we had to prepare the usual Philhealth documents before admission to the hospital, such as:

1. CF1 – to be completed and is available from the Human Resources Department.

2. MDR (Member Data Record) – this can be requested from Philhealth directly or this can be processed by HR.

3. Certificate of Contribution – this should at least be 9 months of contribution, also provided by HR.

It is relatively easier if one’s employed given that this is done ahead of time.

Geared up with these and everything’s a breeze.