A Tubby Tabby, Three Konekos, and a Life with Hello Kitty and Autism

Just Because

A took these out from his pocket a few nights ago and handed them over to me without a word.

Four Hello Kitty pens, a pink nail clipper (now attached to my housekeys) and a small metal sliding-top box for medicines or trinkets

“What are these for, honey?” I asked him.

“Nothing, they’re just some things I thought you’d like,” he answered.


“Just because,” his voice trails off as he kisses me lightly on the lips.

 My heart turns to mush.

I play with the pens for a while. I hang the clipper to my keys (you never know when Alphonse might need a trim). I like the box best as I think about transferring my carry-on first aid items to this box.

“Honey, did you notice Kitty’s nose is not yellow?” I try to make more small talk as A slips off his office barong.* He stops what he is doing and looks at me.

“Is her nose supposed to be yellow?”

“U-huh. She might have a stuffy nose in this one, it’s all black!” I giggled like a mababaw na person (mababaw translates to shallow, but the vernacular sounds more apt) .

A asks to look at the box and gives out a groan as he turns it over.

“What?” I asked.


It’s okay, honey, I love it anyway.


*Thirty second lesson on the Philippines: a barong is an embroidered dress shirt of the Philippines; for office use, linen is the cloth of choice but for a formal affair, the choice of cloth would be delicate fabric made from pineapple, banana, or abaca fibers