My Lola

Lola

In celebration of International Women’s Day today, I remember my grandmother, Lola Cion – whom I had always looked up to from as far back as I could remember.

Lola, the Filipino word for grandma, had been my role model on independence, confidence, and perseverance. Though she was born into a wealthy family, at the time, women were treated secondary to men, and education after high school was not a priority. Lola and her sisters were some of the few who pursued their college degrees, and it was this time when she met my lolo, whom she would marry at the age of 19 against the wishes of her parents.

When lolo died at a young age, Lola strived to be able to provide for her children. My aunt and mom would tell me stories of how they never saw my Lola break down at lolo’s funeral. She would always wear the strong facade when she was with her young children, and there was only one time when my aunt saw Lola sobbing silently in the middle of the night. Through the years, Lola would raise her children the best way that she could, and she did this with integtity and grace.

I, too, saw this strong composed front, when I was growing up. I hardly saw Lola cry, save for a few times (since family drama is inevitable) when she would hastily dab away tears. Lola was the one who brought the clan together, and I savor the memories of then regularly getting together with cousins, nephews and niece.

Lola was my constant supporter. I fondly remember waking up to the classic Happy Birthday music she would loudly play on the mornings of my and my brother’s birthdays. I miss the way she smiled as she played on the piano. She encouraged me to mingle during parties, cheered for me at school when I danced, clapped for me when I would sing karaoke with my uncle during family gatherings. She was there when I was sick; gave some sense of wisdom to me when I had rifts with a family member; supported me through tough times at the university (thesis days); and she was one who was most proud of all my successes.

My lola is now in heaven. And I tear up as I write this as I miss her so much. I am grateful for having her in my life, and I know she is watching over me every day.

8 thoughts on “My Lola

      1. I believe when a loved one passes on, they connect with us through signs and symbols. It can be through songs they loved or feathers or butterflies. A co-worker told me a story about her dad who passed on. Before he passed on, she’d give him Hershey kisses, and he kept repeating “75 cents.” After he died, she asked him for a sign to know that he was okay. As she was walking, she saw 2 quarters. When she picked them up, she saw that that there was another quarter underneath — and a Hershey kiss.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That’s beautiful! I agree, they do connect. A few weeks after my grandma died I dreamt of her on a stage, wearing a white dress, beaming at the audience as she danced. I knew then that she was in heaven

        Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.