Reposting and updating my multiply blog entry on Father’s Day two years ago:
Exactly two years ago, on Father’s Day, I found myself shedding tears as our pastor delivered his message in the worship service. No, his message wasn’t really a tear jerker, but I just remembered Daddy…I was reminded of how good a father he was to me, memories which just make me thank God for allowing me to spend 19 years of my life with him. Tonight, once more, a few episodes from those 19 years flashed before my eyes.
I recalled how my dad tried to strike a balance between his career and his family life, especially when my mom finished her masters abroad & my dad played the role of a “single parent” to me (well, not really coz my mom was just in another country). He took me to my first movie (Karate Kid, starring Ralph Macchio, whom I thought he resembled when he was young – see photo below) and saw to it that I had nice pens and pencil cases. I remembered somewhat comical moments, such as how my dad loved to sleep and how he’d ask me if I wanted to go with him (isasama daw nya ako sa panaginip. haha), and when my dad cracked this joke that Maahas, a place in Los Banos was named such because “maraming nag-aahas ng mga gulong.” (it was pretty funny that time, or maybe twas just in the way he delivered the joke).
My dad could be pretty hands on too, although we’d only see him on weekends when we moved to Los Banos – i.e. he made sure that I really practiced my handwriting and improved my vocabulary, he’d help me out with some school reports, such as a report on extradition that I submitted in social studies in my freshman year in high school. I loved our weekend drives to San Pablo, when he’d make me listen to the music he liked (Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, the Beatles, among others – all of which I also learned to appreciate) and tell me stories about his childhood. Unknown to many, when I was in highschool, he also taught me how to handle and clean a gun (which I’ve already totally forgotten to do so).
Then there were also moments when, although he had already risen in rank career-wise, he showed how humane he was as he struggled to be a dad to a teen-aged me (na sobrang tigas ng ulo, pasagot-sagot pa), and how he eventually realized that I was all grown up na, during his last year when we experienced the restoration of a sound father-daughter relationship. Then, he would page me or call me up to check if I already got home within an hour after my expected dismissal time. Even when he could no longer drive due to the toll driving took on his health, he’d make sure that I got fetched by the driver from my business law classes, which ended at 7pm – even though we only lived barely 3 kms away. During my early days of driving, he would also tell me, “Anak, buti ka pa, maingat magmaneho.” – my oh my, if he only knew…hahaha!
There was also my dad’s piece of advice re: my lovelife, “Anak, okay lang naman kung may mga nagkaka-gusto sa iyo, hayaan mo lang sila, basta wag mong si-seryosohin.” (I did TRY to follow such advice — until I met Mike 🙂 ) I also miss his “vain” moments, such as his morning routine of knocking at my room to wake me up and say, “Anak, dapat may routine ka sa umaga…ano sa tingin mo, okay ba ang suot ko?” (Of course, he looked good. My dad could be dashingly handsome (see photo below). Plus, he always suited up on weekdays)
Everytime I recall these, I can’t help but smile wistfully until tears well up.
It’s been twelve years, yet I still miss my daddy. It’s not that I question God’s timing or His reasons for allowing my dad to leave his temporal existence at 51…it’s just that sometimes, I can’t help that he were physically present these past 12 years of my life, when most of the major milestones in my life have taken place. How I wish I could have seen his face or heard his words as I graduated from college (and passed the boards…i was such a jittery reviewee and i’d frequently dream of my dad during those times), got and eventually quit my first job to go to law school, went to law school (his dream for me…i would’ve looked forward to legal discussions with him) and eventually transferred to the evening program (isa ring evening student si daddy nung nasa UP law sya).
I wonder what he would’ve told me when I decided to take a stab at student politics (he’d probably say, “Kalokohan! Mag-aral ka na lang!”…or what he’d say about Mike and about our decision to get married. (Well, wala naman syang magagawa para pigilan ako…bwahahaha). I wonder what he’d say about Rufus, what tips he’d give so I could be a better wife to Mike. I could only imagine how happy and proud he would have been when the 2010 bar results came out. I could only speculate what piece of advice he would have given me when I was just recently in a career crossroad.
Yet, come to think of it, if not for Daddy’s passing away, I wouldn’t have realized how temporary our earthly existence really is. Sometimes, it has to take a death in one’s family to realize that. (Kaya dapat talaga, we should not focus on temporal riches, but on our heavenly inheritance…dapat talaga mag-focus on the things that truly matter)
Now, more than ever, I realize how good a father Daddy had been to me and to my sister. I thank him for the food trips, for exposing me to various genres of music and to movie classics. I thank him for telling me which undergrad course to take (when I was very much undecided), for watching me when I joined my 1st and only major singing contest, and for allowing me to join my undergrad org. I thank him for living his life well such that everyone who knew him only have good words about him. (I’d beam with pride talaga each time people talk about him).
Despite his very, very high standards, I thank Daddy for giving me such a yardstick, as well as for his many words of wisdom and pieces of advice. He really made sure that I really imbibed values re: family, integrity, simplicity (although I’m not really sure if I was able to imbibe that), and education, among others. Indeed, in almost every of life, my dad had some lesson or insight that he tried to impart to me.
I used to complain that my dad was too strict and overprotective but I realized when I grew up that he just had a unique way of parenting. In fact, thanks to him and my mom, masasabi ko ngang, isa akong batang naging BUSOG sa pangaral para hindi ako “magloko”. I will definitely, definitely (together with Mike), pay it forward to my future kids.
I really want to greet Daddy a Happy Father’s Day (and give him my annual Father’s Day card and treat him out to lunch or dinner), but that’s not possible anymore. Neither could I greet my grandfathers because both of them have already passed away, as well. I couldn’t really greet Mike “Happy Father’s Day” either, because he’s not a father yet (as far as we know…hehehe). So I’ll just greet all of those surrogate fathers that I have. I’m really blessed that my Dad had a lot of true friends, and that I met some of my psedo-dads along the way too…they’re God’s way of not making me feel the loss of my dad too much. Happy Father’s Day to them! 😉
Happy Father’s Day to your dads too. Cherish and love them while you could still be with them.
grabbed this from the website of Laguna College, my dad’s highschool alma mater: