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De Torres, Jei Noriel A.

World Literature

December 16, 2014

The book Bata, Bata Paano ka Ginawa? is a masterpiece of the renowned writer
Lualhati Bautista. The story primarily revolves around the central character of Lea who is a
single mother, raising and providing for her two kids Ojie, her eldest son and Maya her youngest
daughter. The story starts with Mayas graduation from kindergarten and the return of Leas
estranged husband Raffy. Lea became very hopeful that she and Raffy may be able to patch
things up and start all over again but to her dismay Raffy was already married and one of the
reasons he met with her was to take Ojie from her and bring him to the United States with his
wife. Raffy brought it up to Ojie when he stayed with Raffy for a vacation. Lea never interfered
with Ojies choices because she believed that he has his own life and that he should be made
responsible for it. Lea knew that it must be Ojies choice if he wanted to go with his father but
instead Ojie chose to stay with his mother and sister. This instance in Leas life sparked her fear
of losing her children because of their fathers wishes to take them away.
As the story progressed Lea noticed the changes that her kids were undergoing, the
gradual transitions that they encounter and the difficulties that they experience. Mayas
curiosity grew as each day passes, asking about questions regarding all sorts of topics and also
the transition that Ojie is experiencing, his growth from a boy to a teenager. Lea also encounters
problems regarding with her management of time for her kids, the job that she does and the
group where she volunteers for.
It was also very evident in the story that Lea was seeking love for herself, looking for it in
different places and with different men in her life. It was shown when she started falling in love
with her co-worker Johnny, just to be able to satisfy her whim to be with Johnny he immediately
left her kids to the care of Raffy but Johnny stood her up.
Towards the end, it was also shown that Mayas father Ding wanted to take her away
after getting married to another woman that he had impregnated. Lea, the same with her belief
with Ojie and Raffy, allowed Maya to make her own decision regarding the matter knowing that
Maya is the only one who would know what would be best for her. Maya also chose to stay with
Lea in the end, showing the kids love for their mother instead of the desire for a father figure in
their life. The story ended with Ojies graduation. Lea took the stage to give a speech, she talked
about life, how easily it progresses, the changes that people encounter and that the graduation is
not an end but a beautiful beginning.

The book carries with it the primary ideals of a Filipino. It shows ones love and respect
for his family because the family is the only thing that is constant in a world of changes. It is the
only place where you can be accepted for who you are and especially the place where one is loved
wholly. It also emphasizes the importance of being a mother, the special role that the play in the
growth and development of their child, the love that they unconditionally give even in instances
where one cannot even imagine love can grow.
I would recommend this book because it is illustrates the daily happenings in our society
and family home. It reflects the nature of family in our lives and the importance of making good
choices, taking the right steps towards managing our own lives, and living life for ourselves and
the people around us. It brings a true sense of family, love and experience.
The story is for everyone, even the young readers and encouraging them to read this
novel will make them realize early in their lives what they must prioritize and take to themselves
the ability to make good and wise decisions.

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