I had a talk with my best friend last night.
She was voicing out her litany of sorrowful mysteries about life in general, relationship and married life.
At the age of twenty-five she already looked like someone way past thirty.
With one kid to keep her busy and another one on the way, life was becoming hectic!
Bills, bills, bills are all she could think about since the guy she's with only works in the construction yard earning meager pay barely enough to support his and his small family's daily needs.
She is a college graduate but she was never able to put her degree to good use.
Right after she graduated she became pregnant out of wedlock, a very common tale of today's youth and generation.
Though she did finish her studies, she ended up with someone who still thinks that a wife's duty lies in taking care of the household, family and kids.
They live in the province and to compensate for their small income they plant vegetables and other crops too.
She was telling me her daily routines, for we haven't seen each other since she moved in with the guy and went to the province.
With today's hard times and their present economic situation still another baby is on the way.
It pains me to see her. Knowing that the person she has become is too far from the person I knew and last saw just two years ago.
I asked her how its like living the way she does.
She told me, she had some regrets that one she doesn't deny.
But she said her regrets are then muffled whenever she sees her baby boy.
She loves him so much and she can't imagine her life now without him.
Yet, she just misses the days when she was free to do the things she wanted, to pursue her ambition and to dream.
I do not know much about love or relationships, apart from a long distance internet relationship I do not have any experience in the department.
Some things are easier said than done, that I acknowledge too.
But I was curious. If you feel so empty in the present situation why stay WHEN YOU HAVE THE OPTION to leave?
I see the appalling conditions she now endures yet why does she stay? WHY?
Logic tells that its easy to leave.
Pack your things, take your kid, get your transcript and look for a job to support yourself and the baby. And the father is still financially obligated to support his kids. So, why stay and endure all hardships when there is a way out?
As an observer, I see that she is in this vicious cycle.
She's young, she'll have more babies because they don't practice family planning and safe sex, she's not on pills. They barely have enough to buy food contraceptives are out of the question.
Its complicated yet simple at the same time.
She gave me the answer to my questions in four words. "Because I love him..."
That left me flabbergasted. "What is love?" I immediately asked her, because I doubt people really know what it is.
"I can't explain it. It just makes me have the strength to endure all these things.
He's a good man, he treats me nice, he looks after me and the kids.
He may be poor, uneducated and not that attractive, but he's a good man. I feel that he really loves me. He really works hard to provide for us." she said.
That left me confused. In a way I do understand her. I really do.
I know the guy personally. His personality is indeed good.
But still, I can't help but feel angry because they knew their situation before they had the kid yet they did not take the necessary precautions.
They were careless! The result was a baby that was unplanned another one on the way and what then?
Poverty is not a crime, but if you are going to pass it on to another generation that would have to endure the same appalling or worse condition then that is the crime.
She is no different from the thousands or millions of young women out there that are now in poor conditions because they didn't think!
Our government offers no financial or any other support for that matter to these teenage, young mamas. Family planning is frowned upon by the Church that still exercises a great power on how this country's affairs are being run.
There are thousands of kids on the streets, orphanages, rescue centers that are left or neglected by the parents that spewed them.
These kids were born and are now living like that because they didn't think!
The cycle of poverty will never be stopped in this country it seems.
And people blame the government, not thinking what it is they did to contribute to the whole mess.
One should be financially ready before they have children that much I really believe.
I consider it child abuse too if you can not provide for the financial needs of your child.
That child would need to have good meals, good education, good shelter, good health care, good clothes, good things to make his life comfortable. Sadly these things are not free.
Love is a wonderful thing, it sure is!
It makes living in this world bearable. It gives you something to look forward to.
It keeps you sane in this crazy world. It gives you hope.
But love can only do so much I guess. I have seen families part ways even though they love each other too much because of financial difficulties.
Love always jumps out the window when poverty knocks at the door as my mother would always say.
She just smiled when I told her what I had to say.
"Sis, I just hope you won't make the same mistake as I did. Please don't because its hard.
I am already here, I can't do much about it, but you must not be in the same situation. Learn from my mistakes." she told me as she rocked her baby to sleep and I was horribly bastardizing a lullaby about hushing a baby on a tree top with my deep yet squeaky out-of-tune voice.
She is resigned to her present fate. She has become part of the growing statistic of poor, unwed mothers.
Well, one thing I can assure her though. Looking at my present situation, I don't think I'll be in same boat soon. Or I fervently hope not.
I don't know if I would live long enough to ever reach twenty-five and have babies or if I can ever have babies, but then that's another story.