Sunday drama

Sunday is supposed to be a rest day. No work, no pressures, best spent doing nothing and navigated at a glacial pace.

Not for  me. I have to go to work -- but it's not even the source of the drama.

For more than two months now, Sunday has been a harrowing day for me because it subjects me to a roller coaster of emotions and presents me an endless list of things that must be done -- some more urgently than others.

It has to do with Elmo, who's attending high school in Laguna and who only comes home during the weekend. Sundays are when he meets his school mates to board their bus at the CCP.

Before that is a flurry of activity,

We have to do the laundry, do the groceries, have lunch as a family. He must pack his things and ensure he does not leave behind anything he cannot afford to leave. His instrument, sheet music, books, assignments, if any. I have to bring him to the CCP complex at just the right time, make sure he has his dinner (no canteen personnel at the school on Sundays).

All these, a day or two after he becomes reacquainted with the city, and then meets his violin teacher -- still part of the coursework.

Sundays are when he's just getting back into the groove of actually being a member of the household again, who must perform his own share of chores given that we're on our own and have no househelp anymore.

And then you remember he's a child -- who sometimes forgets his things, does not wash the plates properly, who sweeps the floor in a circular manner, and who simply wants to lie idly listening to music or playing games. Among others.

And then he has to leave again.

This morning I lost my cool twice, first because I woke up to a less-than-organized kitchen and second because I felt I was the only one mindful of the time. I cooked lunch anyway and asked Sophie if she could accompany Elmo to the laundromat and to the grocery. Ate obliged; she missed him, too.

At 3 pm we left the house to meet his bus, but not until after we've gone to Tropical Hut, bought a double burger for his take out dinner.

We do this every week. He always asks if we could eat a little, aside from his takeout, and I should have some, too. It's a way of extending our quality time. Another note: I have to make sure he has his allowance -- for extra food and other expenses not covered by the school. One time I forgot and he had a difficult time.

We say goodbye and it's one of the rare times he allows me to kiss him.

He crosses the street alone -- having earlier deposited his things to the belly of the bus. I wait to see that he's crossed safely before I hail a cab that would take me to the office.

And then I cry a little, missing him already.