Q: Rose, please tell us a bit of the story how Rose came to be in Roseville

RM: My family is from the Philippines. My father is the second oldest of six siblings. He took on the responsibility of managing and caring for the family land so that the other siblings could get an education.

Cora is my cousin, her father, Uncle Leo, is the younger brother of my dad. Cousin Cora’s parents came to the US during my younger years. And they would always send money home which helped my parents tremendously. My parents were able to start a small store, which enabled them to provide a decent livelihood for us. My parents instilled in us the importance of having a good education. I remember them saying “study and work hard, never forget your beginnings, be grateful to the people that helped along the way and pay forward and most importantly always thank God for all the blessings.” Part of the reason my siblings and I are the people that we are today is because of Cousin Cora’s family’ generosity and kindness. Cousin Cora and her siblings personally inspire me to be a better person today than yesterday. Uncle Leo, on one of his trips back home, says that his hope is for me and my siblings to graduate college and that one day we can all go to the US to have a better life. Part of his wish came true when I married my husband Tony and moved here in San Jose California in 1985. Unfortunately, he is no longer with us to see it. In June 1989, Tony had a job opportunity to relocate here in Roseville California. Looking back, it’s one of the best decisions we have made, a quiet and safe environment for raising a family like ours. We have been living here since then. I started working for Placer County in December 1990 as a temporary worker. With hard work and perseverance, I was able to attain my dream of holding one of the highest positions that I can be, Payroll Manager. I retired after 30 years, so here we are.

Q: Did your parents move here as well?

RM:  That was my plan, but my dad passed away way before. Luckily, my mom was able to come. She stayed with us for six years, but for that generation, it is hard to make such a major move. She came from a place where everyone’s door is open, and the extended community is large. Sometimes here, you do not see your neighbors for weeks. And during that time, my husband was working 12 hours a day. I was working full time as well and raising three young children. We had our work schedules organized so that one of us was always home with the kids. It can be exhausting at times. And then my mom needed care and we just could not manage it all, so she returned home where I have three siblings who can help care for her.

Q: You saw close-up how Amazing Care was started…did you have ideas about how it might work?

RM: Cousin Cora told me about the concept, I believe in it, and decided to become a member. And the idea of members educating themselves and each other and forming networks of support to help us cope with getting old and life in general. I really like that idea. I remember her saying that when one of her siblings passed away and she realized how important support is. You can get information on the internet, but it is different when you talk to someone face to face. You can hear different ideas and find a path that works for you.

I always make a point to read the ACN newsletters and see the questions people are asking themselves about retiring. After 30 years of working for the County, I felt ready to retire, but only to a certain extent. After a year into retirement, I found a part-time job. It helps me continue to grow professionally and helps with financing our travel plans. My husband and I want to travel more. We just came back from Portugal and have few more lined up this year. My family is the best thing that happens to me. Life is good. I am so grateful to God for all his blessings. Our three children all live together in one house in Washington State. Each with their own spaces, but together at the same place. They can help each other, which gives me and my husband peace of mind and comfort knowing that they are there for each other.

It is one of our ideas for our old age. We have a group of friends here, eight of us. We are all part of the church choir. And it is part of our dream that we will buy a piece of property and build a place, an octagon, with separate rooms for each couple and a communal area. We were looking at a piece of property for this project years ago, and we found one, but at the time, we were so busy raising kids and working. We still talk about it. It takes a lot of planning and agreement. I hope we can do it someday! It is a good concept.