Mama Py in New York

I was invited by a Filipino friend of mine to spend Christmas Day with her family in New York. There, I met a wonderful group of people including the two persons in their family whom they refer as "the ones who tested the 'water', the reason why we are all here (States)"- Mama Py and Miss Lin ( not their true names). It was also consequently a birthday celebration of Mama Py. They were a lively and happy group of people that I felt that I instantly felt at home.

It was different from my previous celebrations of Christmas. During my first year, I spent it with a long time friend in Florida with her mother, the second year it was with a friend from Dominican Republic. Don't get me wrong but I had a nice time in those celebrations but this year's was a more homey feeling.

This year's celebration with Mama Py's family made me think about considering to settle here in the future. It exposed me that it is possible to rear a family and instill Filipino values. I saw how everyone respected each other. I saw how loved Mama Py and Miss Lin and everyone in the senior generation were. The politeness and thoughtfulness of their grandchildren were just admirable. I was moved when they even gave me simple presents. Now I know how unfamiliar people who visit us during Christmas feel when we give them presents.

I am truly grateful that I spent Christmas Day with their family.