I was 8 months pregnant with my second baby when a 7.2 magnitude earthquake hits Carmen, Bohol and other parts of Southern Philippines on October 15, 2013 at 8:12 am.
Our visit to my mother in-law’s house together with my husband and my 6-year old son became memorable. It was Tuesday morning, we were eating breakfast and having a little chit-chat with my husband’s mom, catching things up.
I weighed a little heavier that time, so I just get food from the dining table and choose to sit down on a sofa in the living room so I could relax my back and eat there while watching TV. Sitting beside me was my son, while feeding him I felt shaking a bit, I was speechless as if my mouth was glued and couldn’t open it. I paused and observed everybody, hoping that I won’t feel it again. But the shaking continues..
Without saying a word I grab my son’s arm, stood up, and put my plate to where I was seated, then rushed outside the house barefoot and everybody else followed us. We were standing outside, in the middle of the road, holding hands together. Other families were doing the same. It’s like we were grouping ourselves for some game.
As the tremors continues, more and more people from the neighborhood came out of their houses.
People were scared to death. I was petrified with fear and thought the ground won’t stop from shaking. I could see some people crying, while others were calling all the name of the saints they could remember, and started saying a prayer hoping for it to stop right there and then.
It took few seconds to stop. Kids were scared. I can still recall as my son asked me with a worried-look face, “Mom, what just happened? Why did we rush outside without wearing any slippers?
That experienced horrified us all, especially if you have growing kids. You will probably be worried for their safety.
That terrifying feeling does not end there. The aftershocks were felt every now and then and lasted until a few more months.
And just this month, November 10, 2014 to be exact at around 9:00am I felt a moderate earth shake while I continue writing this article. I wasn’t really sure if it’s an earthquake, so I checked on the news report and it stated that it was a 3.7 magnitude earthquake.
A SUPER TYPHOON
Three weeks after that strong earthquake another calamity has come. I was almost 9 months pregnant when super Typhoon Haiyan, known as Typhoon Yolanda here in my country, Philippines devastated parts of Southeast Asia, particularly the Philippine area on November 8, 2013.
Early that morning as advised by the forecasters we were preparing things for our emergency kit, stuffs like medicines, flashlights, candles, and a lot more. Goods were bought days before.
The weather is awful with heavy pouring rain and it’s cold outside. We’re expecting for a stronger wind in a few hours as the typhoon landfalls before noontime.
I felt so uneasy thinking of my family’s safety. What if I’ll give birth suddenly?, or what if we need to evacuate if the storm gets worst? How would I move so fast when I’m carrying a little one inside me. A Few scary things were playing in my head.
All the news I have watched on TV says it all. It’s no joke! It’s been called a super typhoon because it was estimated to have a really strong speed.
I made sure all our phones are full-charged. Mom phone called some relatives to check if their emergency kits were ready just in case.
When the most awaited super typhoon entered the Philippine area, as if the heaven was furious, I can hear the annoying sounds of the roofs of our neighbor’s houses as the strong wind starts blowing with heavy rainfall. People were vigilant and some were busy monitoring the neighborhood.
I got scared every time I saw someone strolling outside, enjoying the rain and pretending to be kids. They might hit by a roof that has blown away.
Approximately after two hours the weather slowly calmed down. We survived!
But there’s a power outage few more hours later. And when there’s no electricity, there’s also no water supply and that’s the way it is. No electricity means we will all gonna sleep without air-condition nor electric fan and expecting to hear the buzzing sound of the mosquitoes later at night.Uh oh!
Good thing my husband devotes great care to us, he even stay awake just to fan us, me and my son. In order for us to sleep comfortably.
Since there’s no power supply and were not so certain when it will be back, mom decided to cook all the meat inside the fridge to avoid spoiling it. It’s like we’re having a special occasion because our dining table is full of food to eat.
We received no assurance from the electric company on when they can fix the power outage.
The water we secured before the typhoon only lasted until three days. After that we decided to leave for a while and stayed at my sister in-laws house where everything in their area was back to normal, the lights, and the water supply. Mom and my younger brother were left at home.
It’s a little bit hard for me to travel on nighttime with the distance of about 14 km. We’re riding on a motorcycle with my son while hubby is the one driving. My tummy is heavy and emotionally I don’t feel okay after what we’ve been through. It’s really exhausting, but we have to keep going.
Some of my husband’s siblings were also there. I’m glad the house shows a happy mood. Kids were playing, there’s fun and laughter. And later that night the adults agreed to watch a horror movie, the latest one .
We enjoyed the whole experience, kids were screaming and shouting, and on the scariest part of the movie, when the monster is about to turn her head to reveal her true identity, all of us watching were very quite, staying focus on that very moment.. And then..
The lights and all the other appliances in the house suddenly turned off. Everybody’s screaming so loud, scared of the total darkness. It’s a power blackout again! So, we were not able to finish the movie that night. That’s was a funny and a little scary experience.
We stayed there for a day then back home for reality.
The power supply in our area was up four days later. Day after day life becomes normal again.
Almost three weeks after, on November 23, 2013, I gave birth to a 7.5 lbs. healthy baby girl.
And today, November 27, 2014 we are experiencing another typhoon named Queenie. Our town is now under public storm signal number 1. Classes of all levels are all suspended.
It’s so cold outside. The wind is strong with a heavy rainfall.
Keep safe everyone.
Bogo City, Cebu, Philippines, After the Super Typhoon Haiyan