He is the self-made man I very well know of. He doesn’t act on impulse nor does he make any indecisive decisions. When confronted with fear and threat, he remains focused and calm. He seldom gets mad and he rarely raises his voice . And for someone like me who has known him for years now, I’ve come to master his silence. Just like my siblings, I too can sense his uneasiness or his weariness when he keeps his peace.
My father is a man of sense. He talks to us with full of wisdom to share. But his seriousness when he speaks is often mistaken for stiffness. But don’t be deceived, there’s more to him than what meets the eye. Daddy is someone who knows how to laugh and dance and sing. He’s a very good entertainer. In fact, whenever there would be a chance, he would even sweep away my mother’s feet. And we just simply adore him for his candid sweetness.
I remember, when I was still a little kid and my dad a bit younger, he actually kept a healthy lifestyle. He used to go on long walks if not jogging. He was really athletic when he was at his prime of life. But a strong man that he is, my father always restrain himself from giving us a beating. He would rather talk to us than hurt us physically. His scolding, I say, is worse than our butts getting hit. He speaks to us in a subtle manner — no sugar coating whatsoever yet direct and brutally honest. And maybe because he rarely gives his grave remarks that whenever he lectures us, his words would feel like blades that pierce through our hearts. And I think that because of this we’ve learned how to be in our best behavior when he’s around if not all the time.
Truth is, my father is the exact opposite of my mother. My mother is like an open book. She’s relatively easy to read and comprehend. Daddy, on the other hand, is quite complex. You have to know him for a long time to be familiar with him. He seldom shows his vulnerability and he doesn’t like to be seen that way. And honestly, I’ve never really seen him cry my entire life that’s why I was surprised to see him wiping away his tears during our recent trip.
It happened when we were on a family vacation. We went to my grandfather and grandmother’s grave in Surigao del Sur and there, he let his tears flow freely. He was sorry because he wasn’t able to come to my grandfather’s funeral and he was sorry because it took him five years before he came to visit. I felt sad. In a split second, I couldn’t breathe properly. My heart seemed like it was being crushed and my throat felt dry and hurt. I knew it, I was about to cry too. I was just so touched that I decided to rush back to our van and hide. I thought that it would be too embarrassing for him if he’d also see me cry. It was my first to witness him that way. I almost forgot that he was also my grandfather’s child. And that, he too misses his father like the way we are to him.
My father isn’t perfect that I am sure of. He is flawed like any other human being. But he is someone I am very proud of. He may not be with us all the time but for me, he is still the best dad there could ever be in this universe. To have him as my father is a privilege and I wouldn’t have it in any other way; I hope that for having me as his daughter, he would also feel proud.
Belated Happy Fathers Day Dad!!! Remember to take care always. To my late grandfather, belated Happy Fathers Day too! I know my Dad is missing you everyday of his life. You are to him, the best Tatay too.
Again, to my father, to the man I have known my whole life, remember that I will continue to love you just the way you are. Always and Forever.
Hugs and Kisses all the way from the Philippines.