When I was a lot younger I used to spend my dull time imagining mostly about my “future” family.

I am a product of a complete family but not the ideal one. I never saw my parents hug and kiss each other. There was never a day of no confrontations. It must be a typical set-up of a family burdened with financial setbacks. I have always envied kids who were living a much comfortable life. These led me to imagining a perfect family of my own…exactly the opposite of what my young self has experienced.

Finally, after 30 years of perpetual reverie, I found someone whom I barely know. Everything that he said was music to my ears- this sound so hackneyed to me now. I became a definition of the statements “against all odds” and “against the world”. There was not a single soul who approved of this guy because majority of them know about his shady background and yet I chose to stand by my decision BELIEVING that I could turn him into a better person. And with my choice, many of my longtime friends have evaded me. Not only was my reputation tarnished by this choice but specially my family. I have become a stranger to myself and I find it hard time pulling myself back.

He is legally married and he was in another relationship the time he pursued me. The girl had to sacrifice there three years of relationship when she found out that I was pregnant. There was so much brouhaha among us- the women he played on his palm. But there was a feeling of feat on my side as he chose to be with me. But as they say “a cheater will always be a cheater”. I used to have a strong opinion against men who cheat on their partners. When friends ask for advice, I immediately tell them to leave the guy. But now, when friends talk about things like this, I stay mum as I know I am not in the position to give the same words of advice because I am NICOLE.

If there was really such thing as “gayuma” then probably I had an overdose of it that made me so dim-witted for over two years. We have two kids, yes, I allowed myself to replicate my past mistake, HOPING against hope that things will get better and I’ll eventually achieve my dream of my own ideal family. It never happened-the more that I realized that I fell victim to a beast. He left while I was pregnant to our second child and since then he never exerted any effort to see his kids. The hardest part is seeing our first son looking for his dad on things that remind him of his father. I never thought that a child’s cry of physical pain could break me; if their father did not abandon them will it be different? If I did not fall for this person will my life be better? So many ifs…

My frustrations made me vulnerable to so much hatred that turned me into a mother that every child will grow to hate. And unless I learn to forgive myself for the wrong decisions I made only then will I start becoming a good mother to my kids. Maybe somehow, despite the absence of their father, I will still be able to provide them an ideal family we all deserve. I resent Nicole who made the life of Monica and her family miserable. I am embarrassed watching the teleserye “THE LEGAL WIFE” cause I see myself in Nicole. I see how kids’ lives are affected. I see how a Monica suffers. But I am now reaping the consequences of being a Nicole and that does not spare my children. Eight months ago, I did a reality check. I chose to let go of a moral and emotional burden. It was difficult and is still difficult. When I chose to part ways with him, I never thought that he will abandon our kids but he did. But I believe that every separation is a blessing waiting to be unraveled.

I can proudly say that I AM NO LONGER NICOLE.

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