When Will it Be Enough?

dear asian youth,

tamad ka. you are lazy.

wala kang magawa para sa sarili mo. you can’t do anything for yourself.

nanay, tatay, when will it be enough?

i thought i’ve been doing everything right.

all you ask of me are respect and good grades,

and that’s exactly what i’ve been giving.

i’ve been working hard on my own.

i’ve been trying to become independent.

i thought that you would be

proud.

accepting.

loving.

but when you see that my room isn’t spick and span

when you see that i’m checking my phone instead of folding my laundry

why do you say such things?

why is it so easy for you to criticize me

judge me?

disapprove of me

yet every time i tell you of my achievements

you say, “yun ang inaasahan ko.” that’s what i expect.

i don’t understand.

i no longer know what you want from me.

i know what i want to do

or who i want to be.

i’m doing so much on my own that you can’t even see.

yet i cannot provide perfection.

is that why?

do i have to be perfect to live up to your undecipherable standards?

am i no longer your pride and joy?

tamad ka. you are lazy.

tears well up in my eyes when you utter these words

like clouds waiting for their rain to fall

the countless nights i stay up until sunrise

the spotless report cards

do these mean nothing to you?

lazy.

lazy.

lazy.

it loops in my mind

over and over

i type and delete

write and erase

and cover my face with my hands

as a faint pitter patter is heard on the keys of my laptop.

wala kang magawa para sa sarili mo. you can’t do anything for yourself.

my stomach drops to my feet

a bitter flame ignites within me

to you i’m helpless, dependent

like a parasite latching onto a host for dear life

how could you say that?

mom, dad,

when will i be enough?

-julianne

Cover Photo Source: The Teenager Today