My husband is quite a character. I thought I knew him so well. After all, we were steadies for 7 years. Living together revealed an unknown facet of his personality. He likes to market in the palengke (wet market) and do the grocery. Not only that, he is very nurturing and more motherly than me. A fussy father er mother. He loves washing the dishes and even doing the laundry (when the laundrywoman is not available). This was quite a surprise revelation and a minor irritant at first. He can even iron clothes. I can cook, bake, organize and clean the house but I don’t relish the idea of laundry or ironing chores. When the kids were sick with asthma, he stays up all night and monitors their breathing, and give their medication. I grew up in a family where dad was the sole breadwinner and left household chores with the females. My 3 brothers were spoiled by their sisters and my mom.

When we were newly married, I was the breadwinner because he was still in third year law. It’s funny because he was left at home with my daughter’s yaya (caregiver) and the household help most of the time. The yaya would tell me that Lauren’s hands should not touch the floor and if she did, to wash it right away. One day, I arrived home and he smugly told me that he fired the maid for not cooking properly. Ugh! Fortunately the yaya refused to leave but the household help left. That really angered me because it’s hard to find a househelp. How can I work if he keeps firing the household help? One can’t be super-strict with them. I mean I can train them but I was a working mother. I decided that there can’t be two queens in the household. It was not a hard decision to quit my job because I was pregnant with my second girl. Fortunately my boss hired my husband. That was a blessing indeed. (I am forever grateful to Eduardo Taylor.)

Through the years, I accepted the fact that my husband will always be a sort-of-house-husband-homemaker. I admire his ability to combine both father and mother roles. I believe I play both roles too. He still markets for our weekly grocery and cooks our sunday meals occasionally. I let him be because it gives him so much pleasure. Last Sunday, it took him 2 hours to do the grocery because he kept comparing products versus prices. He chatised himself for taking that long. It made me laugh because he didn’t realize he was in the supermarket for 2 hours. Doing the grocery and listening to your iPod are hazardous to shopping time.

Father’s day is coming soon in two weeks. I should do something to celebrate the day with Butch, the father of my 3 children. I love my husband.

About Noemi Lardizabal-Dado

You may contact Noemi (noemidado @ for speaking and consultancy services in the following areas: Parenting in the Digital Age (includes pro-active parenting on cyber-bullying and bullying) ; Social Business ; Reinventing One’s Life; and social media engagement. Our parenting workshop is called "Prep to Prime (P2P): Parenting in the Digital Age (An Un­Workshop)" P2P Un­Workshops are conducted by two golden women in their prime, Noemi and Jane, who have a century’s worth of experience between them. They are both accomplished professionals who chose to become homemakers. This 180­degree turn also put them on a different life course which includes blogging, social media engagement and citizen advocacy. They call their un­workshops Prep to Prime or P2P, for short, to emphasize the breadth of their parenting experience. They tackle different aspects and issues of parenting ­­ from managing pregnancies, prepping for the school years of children, dealing with househelp, managing the household budget, to maximizing one’s prime life and staying healthy through the senior years.

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