“She should have not given birth at her age.”
“Will that child survive?”
“The baby is so limp. Is she paralyzed?”
“They should have prayed more often. Her father barely goes to church.”
“Having that child is as if she got herself a rock that she will strike her head with.”
These were some of the remarks that the writer’s mother constantly heard the day her youngest brood was born. It was not that her daughter had serious physical defects or a birthmark that signifies misfortune but because the child she labored seemed as if it was a comic character. The infant had eyebrows and lips that met each other’s ends, creating a circular figure that outlined her wrinkled face. Her arms and legs resembled the size of a person’s smallest finger. Every time she sipped her bottle of milk, you will see traces of white fluid running in her stomach. The first time that the child walked without any aid was when she was already three years old. Fragile the baby certainly was that everyone in the neighborhood never expected her to live.
One sunny 17th day of March, along the grassy fields of Bayanan II, Calapan City, Philippines, Lydia, then 44 years of age, gave birth inside a jeepney, to a premature and menopausal child. Although the infant weighed less than three pounds, she was not incubated inside a hospital. Instead, the child’s mother, who is a practicing doctor, personally took care of her within their home to ensure proper maternal attention and love.
The writer’s name was taken from the word diamond, for her family considers her their most precious gem. Being 18 years younger than her brother and almost 16 years younger than her sister, she is the gift everyone in their clan has long been awaiting to come. When she arrived, she instantly became the family’s favorite. Thus, the author grew up believing that the love she gets from her family is twice as much as other children of her age could get. It was only during her high school that this insubstantial notion was rectified.
The author always dreamt of becoming a neurologist for she wants to permanently cure patients who suffer the same ailment as hers—congenital epilepsy. Due to reasons that have to do with fear of numbers and sight of blood, she realized that she better off be a lawyer like her father.
Driven by the fact that all family members are UP alumni, the author earned her baccalaureate degree from the premiere national academic institution, the University of the Philippines.
The blogger holds a Juris Doctor degree.
Right now, the author is gradually making those people who misjudged her coming to this world as an adversity. She is not limp after all. She survived. And she is the stone that will be crowned on her mother’s head soon enough.