Morning Rituals

I open my eyes and stretch out my arms, reaching towards the banig mounted over my bed. I breathe in the soft must of the straw.

I look west to gauge the time. My parol lantern hangs by the window. It’s October, so I’m excited to plug it in, even if Christmas is still two months away.

I grind my coffee beans, plug in my kettle, and shake out my French press, trinkets of luxuries very different from my lola’s Folgers and the pan de sal she taught me to dip.

I brush my teeth with Sensodyne toothpaste, even if I don’t have sensitive teeth. My tita, once a dentist in the Philippines and now a dental hygienist in Australia, insists.

I sit by my desk in front of a bookshelf filled with books my nanay dreamed to one day gift to me. I’ve been building my collection since college.

I get to work on the laptop Nanay bought me after someone broke into my apartment and stole mine. She insisted that I not pay her back.

My coffee is ready. I take a sip and I smile.

Author: Marz

⪻ she | siya ⪼
I am a 1.5 generation Filipino-Chinese American immigrant, born in Makati and raised in Southern California. I write, paint, cook, express. Professionally, I am with a national nonprofit organization working on public health, behavioral health, and health justice issues. My background is in education, research, medicine, and health policy and law. Casually, I am a cat lady.
 Based in Los Angeles, California.

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