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What Do Moms Really Mean When They Say Their Classic Mom Lines

Mothers are superhuman beings. They give more than enough, love us, and care for us ⁠— but sometimes nag a lot too. Each mom is unique, but they are alike in terms of having immense love for their loved ones even though they express it in different manners. It is funny to find some similarities in our moms in how they use the same witty remarks, expressions, and sermons when talking to their children, especially during “mom-is-running-out-of-patience” scenarios. 

The words that most Filipino moms repeatedly say may sometimes seem like nothing but a simple scolding, but they say them out of genuine love and care. Here are some of their famous lines and the real meaning behind them

1. Kaka-cellphone/computer mo yan.

There are times when we feel something isn’t right in our body or lose focus to do something correctly, our moms blame it on having too much time spent on our mobile phones ⁠— or other digital gadgets such as tablets and computers. Before we misunderstand it as their usual nagging, believe it or not, our moms really know better. They notice how much time we spend on screens.

So, whenever moms say “kaka-cellphone mo yan”, they are concerned and want to point out how inattentive we have become towards our health and other important activities.

Instead of focusing and looking for happiness in material things, let us spend our time on something worthwhile and to the people who love and care for us.

2. Papunta ka pa lang, pabalik na ako.

This could be a little tricky. Depending on the circumstances, “papunta ka pa lang, pabalik na ako” can have different meanings. 

Since our moms know us too well, it could be that they have a clear grasp of what we are up to and we cannot hide anything from them, or they just want to guide us to not make the same mistakes they might have done in their younger years. 

We and our moms live in different generations that don’t think alike, that is why some might not understand their advice well and give it a pass – until such time comes for us to experience it. We don’t know what will happen in the future, but it is still a good thing to remember their advice in case the same things happen to us.

3. Para kang may katulong, linisin mo yan.

Most of us had days that we felt lazy and left our dishes unwashed, or didn’t clean our mess right away. In some of the Filipino households that are from low-to-medium incomes, we have definitely heard “para kang may katulong, linisin mo yan”. 

Hearing that phrase from our moms, we all know that they just want to discipline us to be responsible and learn how to look after ourselves. They are aware that they can’t be around us forever, so cleaning after our mess is a good practice for real-life battles, and of course, who doesn’t want tidy surroundings?

Did you know that when the things around us are organized, we give ourselves time to focus on what matters most?

4. Mata ang gamitin sa paghanap, hindi bibig.

Can’t find your keys, your socks, or your pen? Just ask Mom ⁠— she knows it all.

We constantly misplace our belongings, and we trust our moms that they actually know where to find them. Their eyes work like magic, but if we start looking for things we lost and cannot find them, watch out for “mata ang gamitin sa paghanap, hindi bibig.” When they say this, our moms just want to remind us not to work half-heartedly, and be more focused. 

Not just on special days, but let us appreciate our moms’ hard work as they manage our home matters to make the family live in a peaceful and safe place. They get tired too just like normal people, so let us understand if sometimes they nag at us even if we feel we don’t need it. Communicate to avoid misunderstandings and differences.

5. Saan ka na naman pupunta?

Travel goals have been the trend for millennials, and despite the pandemic, we cannot resist going out. So at times, we have surely heard “saan ka na naman pupunta?”. Even if we are full-grown adults already, our moms are still worried. This pandemic is no joke, and they know how much we risk our lives for a moment of fun. Also, most of them might miss us. Living in the same house with them or not, moms want to spend time with us and to know more about what is happening in our lives. 

Spending time with our moms or the whole family would surely make them happy. But to be safe, let us avoid going to crowded places. We can try taking a day off on weekdays so there would be fewer people to interact with, and it would feel like an exclusive getaway at the same time.

These are just some things that most Filipino moms can’t resist saying. Maybe they got it from their mom as well. Their words are expressions of tough love, but they are our mom’s own “literal” love language. These words are meant to nurture and set us on the right path. So don’t take it to heart.

In return for our mother’s love, let us aim to share the best things that life could offer. If you can, aim to give your mom a good retirement home. Don’t wait for the celebration, every day should be a mother’s day.


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