I’m a wannabe ‘Sige Mom’
But I was more of a ‘Pigil Mom,’ which means my son was missing out on a lot of things to enjoy in childhoodBy Juana Manahan Yupangco
Philippine Daily Inquirer
My husband and I have recently started taking “yaya-less” vacations in a move that would help us invest more time in our children. It’s almost a paradox since most people’s main concern before a baby is born is to find a suitable nanny, then at some point realize that their children respond only to the nanny and not the parents.
This is something we wanted to prevent before it was too late. As a working mother, it’s easy to rely on the comforts and convenience we have with our household help.
During our first vacation sans the yaya late last year, I discovered many things about my son, just how loving, kind and funny he has turned out to be. However, I also saw the effects of my overprotectiveness and fear of dirt on my son.
He always asked for alcohol after touching something he thought was dirty. I realized that this was completely my fault for always telling him that things were dirty or bad for him.
My kids and I were recently invited to an event hosted by Breeze for kids which was very Nickelodeon in nature—complete with jello pools, balloon paint bombs and sandpits. As my son and I walked around the polo field where the event was held, he took one look at the jello and said, “Mama, it’s dirty.”
However, as he looked around and watched the other kids splashing about and having fun, he slowly started to participate.
During the discussion, I was asked, “Are you a sige mom?” I smiled and kind of nodded, not completely meaning it, as I was petrified at the thought of my son jumping in the dirt.
I listened to the testimonies of Breeze’s “Sige Moms”—Pia Cayetano, Carmina Villaroel, Dawn Zulueta and Tessa Prieto Valdes—and how they let their children explore and enjoy activities. So I concluded that I was more of a “Pigil Mom,” rather than a “Sige Mom.” Which means my son was missing out on a lot of things to enjoy in childhood. I let my son play soccer but I was more worried about grass stains on his shorts. It was time to take some inventory of the things he was allowed to do.
When it comes to doing the children’s laundry, I am very particular with what the clothes are washed in—even going so far as putting soap through a cheese grater so that it can be used in the washing machine. I tried Breeze with ActivBleach and it immediately removed stains and dirt from targeted areas on the clothes.
Best of all, clothes were left smelling fresh and clean rather than having an overpowering smell. Now that I’ve found a detergent that worked well and has a pleasant smell, I could worry less about dirt and stains and focus on allowing my son to enjoy childhood activities.
My family has just gotten back from another yaya-less vacation, this time with two children in tow. It was hard work keeping all the kids’ things in order—feeding, bathing and entertaining them while still keeping our cool.
I allowed my son to do things on his own, eat with his hands and get a little grimier than usual. The children probably didn’t eat as well as they should have, or were as clean as they could have been, but our family is more in tune with each other than we have been before.
If someone were to ask me today if I am a “Sige Mom,” I can confidently reply, yes I am!