My sister-in-law Irene, wife to my brother Archie, spent Christmas in hospital. She is still there. Some days before Christmas, she was not feeling well, a condition that could probably be associated with her pregnancy entering about 30 weeks. (Yes, I will be an uncle again, early next year).
A check-up with her doctor led to the hospital stay to control her spiking blood pressure (preeclampsia). My brother also said that the baby (yes, the BABY!) is doing great, a strong GIRL she is, the doctor says.
My folks are in Manila, upon the invitation of Archie and Irene (and the grandson Dickie!) to spend Christmas with them. Of course, now they have been babysitting the only apo now in the Philippines (two are in the US). While Dad jokingly said that this Manila Christmas trip isn't different from Christmases past in Mindanao because they still found themselves "alone" on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, Mom and Dad are thankful that they are in Manila to be closer to my siblings in these out-of-the-ordinary times (and take care of Archie's household while they are in hospital).
Some days earlier, they were also in hospital to accompany my sister Aimee as she waited on her husband Raoul who had minor surgery.
I am also thankful that they are there. Besides allowing them to be out of their ordinary schedules for about three weeks and to meet up with friends (Dad will have a get-together with former PICOP colleagues from more than 40 years back one of these days, and Dad and Mom will have lunch with Kuya's Opus Dei family sometime after the New Year), they have been given the chance to be help out Archie and Irene, Aimee and Raoul.
I think parents are only glad to be "needed" still.
Read Pia's "All I want for Christmas is a family".