Home Away From Home # 1

My guest blogger today is not a stranger to some of you. Ai of POLISH-ED A! will post about what its like to raise a family away from your home country. Ai is a Filipina now living in Poland. Married to a Polish & blessed with two adorable kids namely Izabela Wiktoria (2 years old) and Jan Karol ( 18 weeks old).

Three years ago, I left the Philippines with a little sadness within me because I will be leaving behind my family, close friends, career and things I invested half of my life. it is hard to give up the things you usually you do. But other part of me, is full of joy and hope since I will be living a new life with the one man i truly would like to spend my lifetime with.

Embarking into a new journey in life which is married life is definitely a no joke especially that I will be leaving far from home. To a new place which isn’t so familiar to me. To a place where everything, you still need to learn and familiarize (e.g. culture, traditions, lifestyle, language). Now, here I am living a simple Polish life.

Living far from my home country (Philippines) is exactly different. I would say difficult, complicated and needed full adjustments. Although, I never had any problem adjusting with the Polish culture and traditions. I like it so far. What is giving me a hard time is the language which is Polish. It’s one of the complicated and difficult languages in the world. Before I came here, hubby gave me a Polish language book for me to learn the language a little, but I wasn’t so interested then. I was so confident that everything would be alright when I get here. And so, the first weeks, months and years living here is a complicated thing to adjust. I could not go around on my own without tagging hubby along because I could not understand the language much more they could not understand me. Here, english is a foreign language. so is with me, their language is such strange. They are so exclusive with their language. I went to a polish language school too for me to even just learn the basics. But, until now I am stil struggling. I am taking my time. I know someday I’ll be perfect with my Polish.

The same year, I got pregnant with our first baby who is now, Izabela. Although, I never take it as another struggle to adjust with because we really would want to have a baby right away. For us, what married is for without a baby. I really thought then that being pregnant and a mom is easy. But it’s the other way around. You need to be emotionally, physically and spiritually prepared. Emotionally, because the changing of your hormones affects your moods and feelings day by day. Physically, to accept that your body will not be the same again after giving birth. Spiritually, you needed much guidance and faith to endure every single things that motherhood brings. You konw that feeling of excitement right? knowing you were given a wonderful gift that you can’t wait to see. That’s what we felt then. We were so thankful & blessed. All the while, the excitement and enthusiasm in me subsides and replaced with anxiety and sometimes regrets when baby came. That the motherhood i thought of, that is wonderful, is not always that wonderful. I got really tired, so stress because of no enough sleep and adusting to motherly life. I have to learn everything on my own from changing diapers to breastfeeding. Merely, it only takes me a couple of tries before i became an expert of those. It’s really true that i just have to believe in myself and motherly instinct will just kick in. Now that I have the second baby, it was no longer hard for me. It was not a problem to deal with since I know what to expect and to do next. I will not say I am an expert mom now. If there’s one thing I am expert of doing at this time, that is changing nappies as quickly as possible, breastfeeding, burping and bathing. As for me, every day to day is a learning experience. NO PAIN, NO GAIN anyway, right?

Everyday dealings of my two kids is really challenging especially that we are trying to raise them both in a Filipino & Polish way. Of course, there’s a difference of both cultures and with how they brought up children here. Child rearing is really not an easy task. There is only one thing that we hold on so dear. Our faith and our love towards our children. We sees to it that everything we do and say, is seen by our children. So we are always careful. Doing things as an example. We are also teaching them to be bilingual. To be able to speak both the Polish and english language.So far, we are successful with Izabela. She can converse now both languages. How? By simply, talking and read her in english while hubby talks and read her in Polish. Me and hubby talks in English and slowly I am going to teach her to learn my own language which is Tagalog. It is true, there is no school that could teach you to be a perfect parent, a wonderful mom. It takes your simple way coupled with true devotion in your heart and mind to be responsible, and there’s no doubt we could raise a wonderful individual.

Knowing and learning the job of a mom is not as simple as ABC’s. It’s a lifetime responsibility that we need to embrace everyday. It needs an open heart and mind to expect every possible worst thing that would happen. The job of a mom doesn’t end in a day like working in an office. There is no coffee, lunch break and vacation leave too. It is a lifetime responsibility that needed full determination. But then, there’s always rewards in the end.

Let me tell you, the greatest job in these world is being a mother and the greatest difficulty is managing the household. Infact, I am proud to say that motherhood completes me as a woman. Seeing my children growing happy, healthy and telling me those 3 magic words ‘ I LOVE YOU!’ is such a wonderful thing to see and hear. Those are things that money can’t buy.

There’s a lot of things I know I’ve missed doing like watching movies, taking my time in the shower and going out without tagging a baby with me. However, there’s no amount of joy seeing my kids with me all the time. I am more comfortable and at ease. Though you can’t help it. there are really times your wishing to be just on your own. That my family is just nearby me so I could ask for help. For me now, It just takes to know your priorities to be able to do things on your own too. That is why, I’m too particular with my time. We are always on the dot when it comes to my kids daily routine. Setting a daily routine for children is I think one way of teaching them to be deligent. My night time routine for them is this; 6pm dinner time; After, bathing time, after bathing read them stories and send them to sleep. So when they are early on the bed and knows already their routines they will follow it. The rest of the time is yours and I call it my ‘ME’ and ‘US’ time with hubby. Hubby sees to it too that he always goes to work early so he could still catch up more time with the children too.

Living away from home may not always be easy for me. However, if I will have just that will and open mind to embrace every new things and take it as a learning experience. There’s no doubt I’ll learn the trick of the trade the easiest way. I maybe living in a different culture and speaks a different language, as long as I have faith and trust in myself there is no reason I can endure my every day dealings with my children, embrace life living far from home and in living a Polish life. As what Jhumpa Lalin wrote in Interpreter of Maladies “The experiences of marriage and motherhood have changed me profoundly, have grounded me in a way I’ve never been before. Motherhood, in particular, makes me look at life in an entirely different way. There’s nothing to prepare you for it, nothing to compare it too.”

I hope I impart something to you in my own little way today.


  1. MommaWannabe says

    Wow what a great post. I am somewhat like…I have learned so much by being married and it did open my world to new horizons.

  2. onlinemommy says

    A long but worth reading 🙂
    Thank you for sharing.

  3. Such a good post.

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