For 22 years, I have been in this roller coaster ride of my life. I have my own share of joys and pains but without you, none of these will be possible. Dad this one is for you…
If somebody will ask me of my fondest memory of my dad, I will have hard time thinking about it. The greatest lesson that he taught me? Difficult. Or how about the sport he introduced me? The games that we watched together? Very difficult to answer.
Ever since I was a kid, I have become accustomed to the fact that my dad is just there, in places I cannot even imagine. He is there because he is working for us. Many times, he wrote me letters with very cute birthday cards or sometimes just plain letters. He would also call us sometimes. I can still picture in my mind the time that I had to accompany my mother to a nearby PLDT station just to make an international phone call to him. It was like four cubicles and you have to wait for your turn as the people manning the stations would have to dial the number of your relatives. In our case, my dad.
Years passed, I was growing…without him most of the time. I have experienced moving out of our original comfortable home and settling into a real Nipa hut, leaving my friends and the church choir, and having to live with only the basics in life. I had known how to go home from school to our current home and vice versa. I was an achiever in school. I was a consistent honor student and I would always belong to the best section in our school. I had to make school projects ranging from basic carpentry to gardening to art all by myself. Well, sometimes with the help of my mom. I was bad in Math and to tell you my dad is an engineer. Engineer is equals to a mathematician and so me being bad in math is equals to hard times in Math.
I don’t play basketball. I also don’t know how to play the guitar. Did you know that my dad used to compete with the different towns of our province as a basketball player? And did you know that my dad is the guitarist of their “barkada” or group? Amazing isn’t it? I learned how to play volleyball primarily because my Aunt introduced me to it and I learned how to sing because of prior urgings from my mom to join the church choir. I learned riding a bicycle I believe from a neighbor and truly, it was not easy at all but the product is meaningful.
Dad was not present in most of my Recognition Days in which I will be awarded a medal for an outstanding performance in class. He was never there in my Cub Scout or Boy Scout Jamborees. I was alone most of the time when I participated in contests in school or in the district with my classmates and fellow contestants all supported by their families. Elementary graduation? If I can remember he was present. High school came and it was the same old story. I still sucked in Math plus Chemistry and Physics. I was still alone making wood joints and the Christmas Lantern Project. I am still clueless how basketball works and billiards to add but I learned how to play badminton through a friend.
Dad, you wanted me to take Information Technology as a course in college so I followed your advice while I prepared to take admission exams in different schools. You never wanted me to take courses that I really find interesting like Law, Mass Communications or Journalism. I graduated from high school, again, with honors, and I remember you were there. You even kissed me. You just don’t know how happy I felt. I also passed the exams I took from all of the schools I applied for in college. I didn’t take your advice but stuck to my own to study in this school and now, I know I was wrong.
Dad, I never had bad set of friends. Even at school, I devoted my time to God and my studies. I was involved in a lot of extracurricular activities. I only smoked three cigarettes and drank a glass of beer in high school. Please forgive me dad. I was carried away by the stories of my classmates and friends having tried these things shared by their big brothers or sometimes even their dads (well, only the drinking part). To this, I also never had a girlfriend in my whole existence in this planet. It sucks dad to some extent but I know it will also be good to me in the long run.
We had difficulty in our finances over the years. But, it was not constant. It is still erratic as of now. That is why I had to transfer to another school and take another course so I won’t flunk in Math subjects like I did there and not be bothered by the expensive tuition and other fees. I transferred and took another course that most of us thought would be a very wise choice. Four years passed and I graduated Magna Cum Laude. I also passed the Licensure Examination. But what’s new? Nothing. You were not present when I graduated and received my award. You were absent when I took my oath as a professional. I had job interviews and exams that you were not there. Most of the time, I triumphed. You were only there to ask me how I was but it was okay. Actually, it was more than enough.
In reality, I never rebelled against you dad. I never dared to ask myself why you are not with me and growing with me. I never asked my mom or even God why it has to be like this. I always followed rules and made you proud with my achievements in school. We rarely talk. I don’t usually open up myself to you to ask some realities in life. I only talk to you if you talk to me and if I am to ask about certain things, things that are not really sentimental that would qualify for a father-son bonding experience. Sometimes, I wish that it had to be different. I mean the set-up not you. I had wished that I would talk to you more and you to me as well but as the years passed, our relationship has grown deeper even without my yearnings for bonding coming to a reality.
It is so strange that even I grew up literally without you on my side, I still want to become like you. I still want to emulate you-your patience, persistence, determination, friendliness (this applies to other people) and your commitment to your family, us. Dad, I love you, I love you because you endured all these years the torment of being away from us. I love you because you always give your best to give the best to us. Thank you Dad for you cared to us even we are separated by thousand miles. We may both have imperfections but those things make our relationship special and unique. To this cause, I am always striving to be the best in my chosen career. I dream that you may relax in the near future and truly enjoy life as you reap your hard work-us. I always give my best to somehow repay you for all the goodness you’ve shown to me, even in my own little way.
Happy Fathers’ Day Dad and I truly love you in my most unique way.ú