GLOBAL EXPATS FEATURE: Holiday Greetings from the Delos Reyeses

Hey PeN Pals!

How’s your holiday preparations doing?

While everyone around is busy finishing loads of work to enjoy the holidays and wrapping gifts for Christmas, let’s take a moment and peek into our featured global expats!

The Delos Reyes Family from Winnipeg, Canada.

It’s been almost a decade since our featured expats left the Philippines for better opportunities in Winnipeg, Canada.

Leaving was hard yet full of anticipation for what awaits them.

Choy and Jessica delos Reyes brought their kids with them; they wanted to provide the best life for their family.

The Delos Reyes kids: Miguel, Carlos and Isabelle.

“We were all excited”, said Mrs. Delos Reyes. The couple have been waiting for their plans to take place one by one. They knew pursuing greener pastures would be beneficial for their offsprings. It will open more opportunities to them.

It is different abroad. Of course,  the Philippines will always be home to them but given that better opportunities came knocking on them, they knew they had to grab it.

They knew things will not be perfect but they were ready to face the trials. “If others can do it, why can’t we?”, the couple thought.

And so, the difficulties came of little weight as if they weren’t burdens at all. The Delos Reyes family dealt with problems that are not really peculiar to foreign workers.

It was mainly the Canadian culture that made it harder to adapt at first. The language barrier and new faces; change in daily routines and homesickness were of course making the new foreign family pressured.

“We had to be there for each other”, said Mrs. Delos Reyes.

“If I sense that someone (in our family) is on the verge of sadness, I always make sure that things are immediately assessed and that they are assured that we’ve got each other’s back; remind ourselves why went there in the first place”.

Life back home in the Philippines is seldom quiet nor empty. Often living with extended families, Filipinos are used to having other family members around. They have their grandmothers, aunts, nieces and nephews sometimes living with them in one household.

“It is hard not to have other relatives nearby. You have to do it all by yourself”, according to the couple. That’s why having new friends and support system is extremely important for our dear expats, at least for a solid moral support.

This holiday season, the Delos Reyes family plans to spend it simply. Work also has to continue even on holidays so a part of their special day would be spent working.

KEEPING THE FAITH. The Delos Reyes family never sees to it that their faith is bigger than their problems. Their family is stronger and closer than before.

Although it is a snowy winter wonderland in Winnipeg, holidays in the Philippines are undoubtedly better.

“Christmas will always be best spent where our hearts are. We may find success here but the Philippines, where we were molded, will always be the best place for us.”

A Christmas postcard made by the Delos Reyeses.

Indeed, home is truly where the heart is.

For more featured global expats, follow the ‘GLOBAL EXPATS’ community on PeN!

Have a merry holiday season, PeN Pals!

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Posted by Clarisse Javier