I grew up this way… (Author’s Biography)

“I will try to recall every little part of the life I had lived since the day that I saw the world. This way the world will know on how I did grew up…”

I was born June 12, 1985, Philippine Independence Day it is! I am the eldest of the five siblings, my proud mom is Mrs. Gloria Saturnino Ramos and my Dad Mr. Gerardo Hermano Ramos.My birth place is in Bantigue, Pontivedra, Capiz, Philippines.

My mom told me that during the day that I was born my Dad was so drunk that he didn’t even know I already came out of the world. He even thought that I am a boy.

My mom had her labor and gave birth to me in our house by the help of a “Paltera” local term for traditional midwifes. My Aunt and our neighbors came rushing into our house some has intentions of giving aid or help others came just for gossip. Well that’s life.

When my aunt saw me she went laughing so loud and told my Mom I look like a monkey since my hair was so curly and thick and my arms and whole body was covered with Vellus hair too! At the same time I got this native Filipino color “dark brown skin” Weeeee! I was thinking maybe Darwin’s theory was true. Kidding! Hehehehe…

Well, as I continue to grow up those hairy things are little by little getting out of sight. I think it’s just normal maybe I’m just “Balbon”.

I was also told that when I was a baby I use to cry a lot and cry so loud. No wonder I already lost my Golden Voice so early that I wasn’t given the chance to become a good singer. Sigh!

My Dad use to sing for me while Grandpa was playing his Banjo. This moments were really sweet! Mom said, while dad was singing he use to dance too, then he and grandpa would laugh together. This is their way of playing with me and calming me down so that I wont cry. Grandpa created a “sibay” for me, it is a native term for swing that looks like a baby chair with rope being tied to a log or anywhere else where you can pull it up and down to make it swing. Whew! really hard to describe, but that thing makes me sleep tight!

When I was already crawling I use to tease Grandpa by chewing cotton balls like a bubble gum and letting him get me. Hehehehe I’m a really silly little girl!

When I celebrated my first birthday, my Aunts and my Mom prepared a little party for me. We were living at Grandma and Grandpa’s farm in Ivisan, Capiz that time.Grandma and Grandpa has a Carabao which I was afraid of riding! Their house was just simple take a look at the picture below:

My first Birthday with my Mom 😀

They prepared spaghetti, sandwiches, jelly ace hehehe I can’t describe the other one. See, do I really look like a monkey on that picture? The picture was kind of old it was taken June 12, 1986.

Year 1987 came, my mom gave birth to a baby boy my Brother Glen. Oh, by the way My name is Glenda mom and dad gave that name to me. I almost forgot to mention hehehehe.

My dad was working as “Watcher” on a fish pond owned by AA Export and Import Corporation. So my brother was also born in the same place where I was born.

When my brother was still a baby I always use to play with him. I could still remember when I took him out of his crib and let him eat tidbits of thermo chest I found in the kitchen! So silly! Good thing my Mom came in and saw us! My brother was 8months old and I am 2 years old.

During market days Mom use to bring us two with her. People would always thought we are twins since Glen is as big as me. 😀

I could still remember the picture of us in yellow pajamas at the Airport when we accompanied our Aunt Gilda who was going back to Manila that time. It’s soooo cute, we were eating lollipops.

Going back to Grandma and Grandpa, they paid us a visit and even stayed with us in our house. However Grandpa was already sick that time. I could still remember when we were teasing him while he was inside the mosquito net that we will eat his barbecue. Grandpa would really, react and told us that he will spank us. That’s how naughty we are hehehehe. It’s just sad since grandpa died.:(

Two years later, my Mom had given birth to my Sister Geriza, that was 1989. She was a cute little girl with curly hair and big eyes! So there were already three of us playing together. Glen really loves playing with our little sister and really loves her so much.

We seldom get out of the house since Mom told us that there were people riding on boats who gets children and gives them to a crocodile. I could still remember on how afraid I am to get out of the house. Mom also teach us to sleep every afternoon and what’s the catch? After waking up we already have candies and biscuits waiting for us. Mom told us it was given by the Giant who saw us sleeping and told her that we were good girls and good boy and that he would not eat us instead will give us a reward. 😀 We then happily eats those. When we don’t sleep surely the Giant will eat us up! Scary!!!

I could also remember that we always play with our toys, I have an ugly doll, with pimples and big tummy named Apple and cute doll with rosy cheeks, wearing green dress named Twinkle. But not only that I also love playing car toys and robot toys. Sometimes we exchange toys I play with my brothers cars and robots and he plays with my Dolls. Crazy!!! We also love books, though we don’t know how to read yet but we have more books that we use to view and open everyday. I could still remember the “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” book that plays a music when opened. Mom reads us books during bedtime. Until we were able to recognize things that are in it and read! Me and my cousin also use to play “Doctors”. I would diagnose the ugly doll, having tape worms since she has big tummy. Another ugly picture of mine below with my cousin hehehehe.

Mom prepares our milk every night before going to sleep. We have ten Baby Milk bottles, I would always drink 8 bottles. Hehehehe! Loves milk a lot! I could still remember when Mom throw my Milk Bottle in the pond to stop me from the milk thing and instead teach me to eat meals. Hehehe I was three years old that time. Know what happened? I didn’t stop crying, while looking at the milk bottles floating at the pond, I would not even eat either. With no choice Dad riding in a boat bring back the milk bottles. 😀 That made me Happy Again!

The worst and sad thing. When I was four years old my Brother Glen died, when he drowned on the pond. 😦 The stories before that. Every night before we go to sleep, Mom and me, my bro and sis would pray together until one night we just heard this very scary voice like that of an evil laughing so loud at the back of our house. Our place was surrounded with water and big trees. In front were the ponds my dad use to watch and at the back were big Trees that grows in watery places and a lake. Neighbors are far away from each other. So it’s really scary! it’s the first time we heard such a very strange and scary sound! It even echoes back, the voice laughed three times. That kind of evil laugh. We were so afraid that we slouched in bed and my brother covered his head with pillows. My mom shouted at the voice to go away. And we never heard it again.

The next week, our cat “Romnick” died from drowning in the water. Mom keep the cat’s body inside a sack and together with my brother they throw it in the lake. My brother accompanying my mom that time ask a strange question. “Mom if I die would I be like the cat? Do I have to be placed in a sack and thrown in the water?” Mom was astounded, and answered my brother that people was given a burial and is different from cats. They continued trudging their way home and mom never bothered to think about the thing brother asked her.

Our pets, we have pets, “Joker” our good dog, Sheryl and Romnick the cute cats. These three were so close to each other, they eat together and sleep together. Romnick and Sheryl sleeps lying at Jokers arms. And most of all they are so neat that they don’t sleep outside the house and don’t eat dirty things.Me my brother and sister loves playing with our pets too!

My brother Glen had this habit of wearing shoes even inside the house or even when he sleeps. He always wears shoes, he told mom he doesn’t want his feet to get dirty. He also loves telling me ” Sister, you know what eating vegetable will make you look pretty.” He always reminds me of this since I don’t eat veges. And he loves our little sister very much that he would always look after her and take care of her.

One day, we had this so much fun playing together that we didn’t even notice we were already outside the house. Laughing and teasing each other. We played with small lady bugs since there were lots of it in the grasses outside the house.

After a few minutes, my siter Geriza was running towards me while holding a small wood stick and teasing to hack me with it, so I ran away so that she would not reach me, while I was running backwards with my face on my sister, I saw my brother Glen, standing at the little wooden bridge used to feed the fishes in the pond. He was smiling sweetly at me while waving goodbye. Since my sister is continuously running towards me I was also trying my best to ran away from her, i waved back at my brother while smiling at him then I turned back and ran away. Until me and my sister got so tired that we decided to go back home. We asked mom for a candy and she gave us. We love eating candies especially the one that is “Melon Flavor”. Not noticing the hour we fell asleep. Upon waking up, my Mom who was sewing some of our clothes ask if where was my brother. I told him that maybe he went to his godfather’s house. So me and my mom went outside to look for him. We went to his godfather’s house but he’s not there, we shouted his name but nobody’s answering. Until we saw his slippers floating in the water. My mom was already scared so she went down in the water but the current was so strong and the water is so high since it had paddle wheels. Mom asked for help on the neighbors who also came rushing towards the our house for a search and rescue, they turned off the paddle wheels and went on the water. My dad who was on the other pond feeding the fishes in his boat told mom that there’s something that stops him from going, he said that his boat was so heavy that he can’t get out of the place. On the other hand, there were already so many people searching on the pond, it took hours for the team to search until my brothers godfather noticed something in his feet, He swam and raised it and Oh my God it was my little brother! My mom’s heart was really pounded so hard. They tried to give my brother a first aid. The hospital was so far away that you still need to ride a boat and a jeepney to reach the city.

My mom and our neighbors came rushing to bring him to the hospital. But it was already too late. My little brother was already dead upon arriving at the hospital. My little sister who was 1 year old that time was crying so hard. She couldn’t believe our brother died and I even.

So after that his body was brought back home but it was already inside a coffin. It was really sad. There was one strange thing that happened. Our cat Sheryl would always go into his coffin and watches closely into my brother’s face and cry, the cat even wipes the crystal of the coffin while watching the face inside and crying. The cat would eat foods my brother wants to eat and would sleep under the coffin as if she was guarding it.

My sister even saw my brother one night getting some candies that falls under the house. She told mom, “Mom come here, there is “Dodoy” under he was trying to get the candies. ” When mom looked at what my sister saw, she never saw anyone but the cat who was that time playing with the candy.

Our favorite book “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” was lost. Until one day after my brother was buried. My mom, me and my sister just heard it playing and found it on my brother’s box. I think my brother wants to remind us that he misses us.

My brother died when I was four years old, he was three and my sister was one year old. Before he died Mom said that there was an old woman who came passing in our house and told her that we need to vacate the house and leave since if we wouldn’t someone will die from our family. My mom didn’t give attention to it since she taught it was just a superstition. Maybe it’s true or it’s just a coincidence. Mom also said that the afternoon while we were playing she saw a girl on our door wearing a white dress looking at her. Then my brother came inside the house to ask for a candy to my Mom, she gave him three pieces and kissed him. Then my brother went outside again. Mom thought we were still playing since she heard our voices.

After one year, we left the place and went to our Father’s place in Bicol, Camarines Norte. There we faced another life’s challenges.

One night mom had a dream about my Brother, they were at the beach and she saw him, then my brother was telling my mom, “Mom, did you know what, this hurts a lot, it really hurts” while pointing at his neck and his stomach. I could still remember that it was the place where he was stabbed by the embalmer to let the water get out of his body. Then my mom said that as she continued to came closer to him he slowly disappears. Until he was gone and she never saw him anymore.

When we were already in Bicol, we lived at our Grandma’s house since we don’t have our own yet. My dad was driving a tricycle for a living. My mom use to accept laundry since she has no work yet.

I went schooling. I attended my primary/kindergarten at Ave Maria Child Learning Center. A school runned by priest and nuns. Sistes Bing and Sister Tony was our teachers. Father Eboña was our principal. I really love staying at the church everyday, I would always pray and I believe that Jesus is looking at me. I have two good friends Helen and Shane. We would always play together.

When we celebrated Mary’s Birthday, I was one of the Angels. Beside me was my sister.

When I was young I wanted to become a Doctor to help and heal sick people

During our graduation Ceremony I was awarded “Most Polite” and I was asked to lead the group  for the Philippine National Anthem.I had one tooth missing here that’s why I never smiled heheheeh.

This time my Mom was already working at the City Assessor’s Office. A lot of things changed especially with my dad. He would always go home drunk and would destroy things inside the house. He also shouts at mom. And always spanks us.

When we were little my sister and I use to earn money by selling empty bottles of whiskey we collect from houses. Sometime our neighbor use to let us help with their chores and gave us money.

My mom had  miscarriaged twice, two baby fetuses died. Glen John and Glen James. The reason is, she’s always stress, and my dad would always let her work. Dad really changed a lot.

When I was in grade 1 at Jose Panganiban Central School, Mom left us to Dad and went to Manila to work. When she came back, we were so sickly and thin, since dad never takes care of us. He’s always away and didn’t even give us food. So my sister and I would eat sometimes in our Aunt’s house sometimes at our Grandma’s. We understand why mom left us. We know that it is for us too. My sister got Hepatitis and Whooping Cough. I would always go to school without allowance, and without eating. But still I attended my classes. I could still remember getting papers from a trashcan so that I can write.

When mom came back, she brought my sister to a doctor. I still continued with my schooling. During our Christmas party I was the only one with no gift for the exchange gift. But because I had this rich classmate Ralph John, I was able to receive a gift. 🙂 I think God loves me. My teacher asked me to sing a song for the class and I did sing for them.

When I was in grade 2 I transferred to another school in Calogcog. I was a bit boyish when I was young that I love wearing, short, t-shirts and hat. My haircut was also like that of a boy. Some people thought I was a boy. My classmates would always tease me too. But I don’t care. I had this monkey friend that every time I go home from school I use to buy “Aratelis” a native fruit, that I use to feed monkey. He was always happy to see me. He use to scratch some of the children who came near to him but monkey never does that to me. Of course we were friends!

Back to our family. My dad continued to change and becomes worst everyday until one day we saw him punch mom. That was too much! He even brought his girls in our house and let mom serve them.

With this Mom and we decided to separate from him. We secretly left the house and went to Manila. Where we stayed at the neighbor’s house in Bacoor, Cavite, while mom was working. Until one Christmas day, we receive a card from dad telling us that He and Mom will never be together again. I felt a little bit sad for that.

My Mom is a really strong person, she showed us that life is worth living for. She worked hard for us and in return we did our best not to let her down. A lot of things had transpired when we were in Cavite until we decided to go home to Mom’s hometown in Roxas City Capiz.

We took a trip by the sea/ship to go home to Roxas. We were gladly and warmly welcomed by my Aunts, Grandma and cousins. Then we stayed at Aunt Gilda’s house and Mom enrolled me to school I was grade 3 that time. So I did went schooling at Don Inocencio Del Rosario Memorial School in Dayao, Roxas City. Until ine day we heard a rumor that dad will come and take us away from Mom. With that mom didn’t waste time and we again went back to Manila so that Dad will not see us. I stopped with my schooling for 1 year because of that. When we heard nothing about the issue anymore we went back to Roxas again. This time we stayed at Aunts Josepfina’s house in Culasi. Then Mom enrolled me and my sister at Tanque Elementary School South. I am still in grade 3 and my sister is in grade 1. We would always play “Teacher-pupil game” I’m her teacher and she’s my pupil. She always loves it when I teach her how to read and write.  Since we don’t have a house in Roxas yet, we occupied an empty goat house my Aunt uses for the goats. Yes! we stayed there., it was so small and the space is just enough for the three of us to lie down when we sleep. Then my sister and I got a new hobby! In Culasi Roxas City mostly people does fishing for a living and we have nieghbors who had this Dried Fish business. When we don’t have classes we would help and work in thier dried fish farm. In return we were given 50 centavos for every blocks we finish to fill with fishes.  We were happy since we can buy candies after and give some of our money to mom. Me and my sister always loves adventure and we would always play at the beach. My mom works as Office Assistant at the Dentist Office and dealer of Bavaria foods. Sometimes she would bring hotdogs and ham for us. Woww!!! During lunchtime we would stay at mom’s office and have lunch there. At the back of thier office is a bowling station and a printing press where we would play together with our playmates. We would bowl and we play with scratch papers at the printing press.

After a few months my Mom decided to go to Manila for a new work opportunity. So we stayed at Aunt Gilda’s house. We continue to go schooling until the closing of classes. Since I was a transferee at Manuel Roxas Memorial  School I was placed at the last section. But my classmates were all active in school and during recognition day I was given an award “Model Girl”. That’s the only award available for last section classes. So my aunt accompanied me to the stage to pin my ribbon. My 3rd grade was also a memorable one. I would always play with my clasmate Eddimar who is an only child and otistik then me and my sister would sell candies to our clasroom so that we can have additional allowance. We would always eat soup and spaghetti at the canteen and I love to play cards with my clasmates and I love to collect pencils and pens too! I have a friend who is a vendor at school. Though I may not remember her name but “Manang” as I call her is nice to me. My Teacher, Ma’am Francisco was very kind to me too! During that time I speak a little Ilonggo or vernacular since we use to speak tagalog at home. I had a hard time adjusting to my classmates who knows little Tagalog too! But I enjoyed that year very much. Trials and frustrations comes to me when we’re home at Aunt Gilda since she was strict and would always hinder us to play  outside the house. But she always takes good care of us.

When I was in 4th grade I transferred to a new school near Aunt Gilda’s house. Don Inocencio Y del Rosario Memorial School. There we would always go to school with our cousins. My sister is in 2nd grade. My Aunt Gilda would always get angry at us if we don’t do the laundry and fetch water. We would always fetch water at the well since we don’t have faucet at home and we don’t even have electricity. I would always cry becuase she wouldn’t even allow me to send mails to m y mom and when mom send us money she would take it from us.  Everything is in her control. I felt like I was being tortured mentally. I would alwys go to school walking even when the sun is very hot. I would always have headaches and my Aunt would just tell me I’m just acting out. I think my migraine started that time. I would always feel that intolerable pain in my head and sometimes I would nosebleed.  At school I always make sure I won’t fail any subjects and so recognition day came and I gained the fruits of my sacrifices becoming the 3rd honor in the class. My sister got the 1st honor and Model girl award. My mom was very proud though she was not around.

Later that year Mom went home to deliver a new baby. My brother Geric. He was not my father’s adn it’s a long story how it happened. But he came out as a healthy baby  boy. We were so excited since we can go bonding again with our Mom and with the new baby. After a few months my mom came back to Manila again. And we did spent our summer still at Aunt Gilda’s house together with grandma and uncle Sandro. Everyday we would always hope that mom arrives.  Since we are near the pier we could always hear when the ship sirens.

So when my mom went home again we transferred to a new location we went back to Culasi at Aunt Josephina’s place. We also transferred to a new school and met new classmates and friends. Another adjustment to a new school environment. During that time I really enjoyed schooling that I would taught it was a game.  As we stayed there my mom asked the lot owner if we could temporary stay there and have a little hut in thier area. Good thing she said yes, so we stayed there. We’ve been thru a lot in that place too! We were hit by a typhoon and my sister got sick and my bother and my mom got hospitalized too! My mom also lost her job and it did came to the point where we have no source of income and its a total crisis. Then another brother came to us. My bother Gio John. He was a cute and clever boy. Good thing he was able to surpass everything. I could still remember that he would just take sugar and water that serves as his milk. Poor little brother. But we never gave up. I and my sister continued our schooling. We applied as working students at school so that we can continue the schooling. Our teachers are always helpful to us. Sir Aguilos let us work in the canteed managed by hs wife and family so that we can have free food during the recess and they also gave us some snacks for our little brothers at home. I really thought that I couldn’t continue my schooling that time. I always get sick and when my teachers brought me to a hospital for check-up my Migraine was diagnosed. I was given medicines to take. I really thank God we were able to surpass those trials. My mom got a new job at AA Export and Import corporation and I was able to continue schooling and my sister too! I was the first honor in our class during that time which is unbelievable for me. The issue had also became a debate inside our school since some parents are protesting because I’m a transferee but my teacher showed them my grades that proved I’m the top one in the class and they can’t tweak the record. I don’t know but I would always perfect some of our exams…hmmnnn maybe beacuase of the migraine, hehehehe… During graduation day my mom proudly accompanied me to the stage to get my medal as top 1 and academic awardee. Below is my picture.

During my sixth grade we still stayed and went schooling to the same school. I graduated my elementary as a class Salutatorian. My picture is below. For me that’s the only gift I can give my mom at least I can make her proud of me. 🙂

When I enrolled in my high school as a freshman student. I applied as a working student at the Principals office where I was accepted. I was given the responsibility to do janitorial work in the office and in the school too! Sometimes we do gardening, sometimes we do wall painting. Our principal also entrusted me with school paper works such as file updates and etc.  Honestly I was the only person in that office who knows on how to use the computer. Since I think that’s the first time public schools were introduced into computers. So the teachers were still attending seminars on how to’s. They were happy with my service and are very kind and nice to me. I worked there for almost four years until I was able to finish high school and graduated as class salutatorian.  My highschool years were memorable too! I think I was the most busiest student in school since after classes I would do chores at the office.  I have classmates who would bully me and make me cry. But I have good classmates too. I like being alone rather than going in groups. And I would always concentrate  on my task and responsibilities. I’ve been in so many ups and downs during my high school years. Every summer I would work as dishwasher in a small fastfood chain to earn money. There was a time when I was in my freshman years my classmates bullied me and made me cry becuase they were telling me I’m not smart becuase I was just top 3 in the class. They said they were expecting me to be the top 2 or top 1. I really cried so much and told them I don’t care about having the top position. What is important to me is to contunie my schooling.  When I was in my sophomore I was able to get back to top 2 and in my junior years there were only two of us in the honor list left becuase of the cut off grade.  I’m thankful God loves me and I was able to maintain my grades. Another memorable memory for me is our JS Prom. I have a classmate who has abnormality and my classmates won’t make partner with him because they are shy. So I asked that classmate of mine to become my partner and he was happy. I never regretted it becuase it makes my feelings light when I am making someone happy. Though people laughed at us during the Prom and though we both cried but we made it a success we were able to attend the JS Prom.  One good thing about my high school life is that it was a success!

Then comes college. This is the most challenging part and this is where the most dramatic part of my life happened.

8 thoughts on “I grew up this way… (Author’s Biography)

  1. Your life is so interesting!
    im sorry to hear about your father and mother. your such a strong person its really inspiring!

  2. Well your article helped me very much in my college assignment. Hats off to you post, wish look ahead for the duration of more interrelated articles soon as its united of my pet question to read.

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