The Musician Dad Who's Seemingly Found the Secret to Balancing It All


Welcome to Esquire's Journal Project. This month, we're featuring the real lives of fathers, pops, sugar daddies, busy zaddys, and more. We're asking all sorts of fathers to give their unfiltered accounts of what's it's like to lead a family in the strangest of times. Here are their stories.

Today, musician and entrepreneur Jim Bacarro shares how he balances parenting, self-care, work, and beyond in the middle of a pandemic. The short answer? By keeping himself emotionally healthy and remembering the things to be grateful for. Here's a snippet of what goes on in his life with wife Saab Magalona and with their two boys.


6:00 a.m.

Vito is usually first to wake up. He's my alarm clock. Saab brings him to me and kisses me to wake me up. He demands we go downstairs. What an incredible way to start the day. Right away, it's clear what matters; what's most important.

8:00 a.m.

The kids have taken their baths and have eaten breakfast. I do my morning therapy with Pancho. They're about to take a nap. I feel accomplished as a father. Now it's time to work.


10:00 a.m.

Trying to stay focused and be efficient with my time. I know they're about to wake up! Gotta finish all my meetings and the most important stuff right away!

12:00 p.m.

Lunch time. Time to catch up with Saab. We try our best to talk about non-work or non-home stuff but we eventually end up talking about work and home stuff. Bawi nalang sa lambingan during dinner. We always say "working lunch?" right before our meal.

5:00 p.m.

I just finished cooking dinner for the boys. Work is done. Now, Saab and I leave our phones and play with the kids. They usually demand the guitar. First 30 minutes, we play guitar and sing. I also use this time as "R and D" for this special project we're planning! We say good night and I know the day is done.


6:00 a.m.

Okay, another day in lockdown. Before playing with the kids, I gotta make sure I'm emotionally ready to start the day. I write down in my journal things I'm grateful for. Every day, I'm just thankful we have a home and we have good health. So, no matter how I wake up, I've set myself up to have a clear mind.

1:00 p.m.

Just finished lunch and now a little me time while they take a nap. I'll workout and listen to some podcasts. These are the few moments that I don't have dad guilt for having time for myself. Parental guilt or FOMO with the kids is really a thing—especially when you hear them just outside your door.

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3:00 p.m.

Am I done with work? Should I just stop and go to the kids? I hear them playing. I can do some work but these things are just low-priority tasks. I'll feel bad if I don't go to them. I end up scrambling. I try to scratch off all admin and other tasks that don't require much brainpower. I empty all the clutter in my brain before going to the boys.

6:00 p.m.

With the boys asleep, I cook our dinner while Saab prepares the movie or series for the night.

8:00 p.m.

We do the podcast. We only do podcasts when the boys are sleeping. Another day. Yes, it's routine. Yes, we're stuck at home but, man, am I blessed with so much love and happiness.


Wake Up With Jim & Saab


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