A fathers' day open letter

Growing up, I never questioned your authority, dedication and hard-work to keep this family united, strong and bonded. During those times, however, never have I thought what you really meant as a father or what the word truly means, per se. I used to question your rules, broke them, even. I used to get irritated that you still had to drive me to every event I go to; and get even more irritated that you also fetch me no matter what time of the day. My childhood and teenage years passed without so much of thinking about you, your role in my whole being and how much you mean to me and all of us.

Then, college years came. I remember getting really excited of what lies ahead. You were always there by my side. As I have become so dependent on your driving skills, I never knew how to go on commute well. So during the times I have been processing my papers for entry to the University, you have always escorted and fetched me. And this continued on until I was a university student - for almost the whole duration of my first-year-college life, you have fetched and accompanied me. And then one time before driving me to school, out of the blue you told me, "Wag kang magpapa-api, ah. I know you're smart. Use that. Be street-smart. Boys, they tend to brag about girls they get. Baka mamaya, hindi mo alam, kung anu-ano na kinikwento nun sa mga kaibigan niya." and the only reply I was able to give was a laugh and a short response: "Hindi naman ako ganun". It must have been difficult for you to see your only girl grow; let alone, let her be off on her own. But that was what you did - you and ma. You just allowed me to grow and be on my own without having so much the need to tell me the restrictions because I know that you both trusted me, my judgment and my character.

Then, graduation came, and then one by one, you stopped doing the things you used to do for me. It came as a shock to me that one day, you urged me to learn how to drive. And then you stopped driving me around as often as you used to in my younger years. Then the rheumatism came, then the gouty arthritis and then the heart problem. That was when the realization hit me, "Uy, tumatanda na din ang mga magulang mo". I've always had this "superman" image of you. I always thought that the father I grew up looking up to will always stay as he is until I myself grow old and have children of my own. It never occurred to me until that point that hey, you also  gain years just as much as I do. Of course I know your age increases, but it never occurred to me just how much the additional birthdays have actually taken its toll until that time. And I guess, that's the point wherein I was finally able to see who you are to me and who you'll always be: my protector, provider, love and father. For the first time in my life, I have finally defined how much of a father you are in my life.

I love you and that goes without saying. I know you deserve everything in life but you have chosen to provide for us instead. I'm glad that at this point in your life, you already got to travel to three continents now. Soon, Pa, it'll be my time to give back. I know you never asked for this directly, but someday, I swear I'll take you to Egypt - your dream destination. You deserve this and more not only because you took care of me but because you have showed us just what unconditional love means. I love you and always stay healthy.

Taken during parents' European tour Dec, 2012 at Louvre Museum, Paris, France.
I love how the world still amazes you despite all the problems you've been facing.
We all need that in our lives, I guess, that awe and wonder that the 
world is still such a beautiful place. <3

During their visit at Familia Sagrada Church in Spain (Dec, 2012)
 You are truly one such big goofball.
I remember just to make us laugh when we were young, 
you often start dancing in front of us with or without music! Haha
And, not to mention that time when we were at the cinema,
watching Iron Man 3 and you suddenly fell asleep.
Normally, that kind of behavior is acceptable
but when you started snoring loudly, I swear, I had to
stop myself from laughing. Hahaha (And yes, you did this
for like 1/3 of the whole

Rome stop (Dec, 2012) during the European tour
I sometimes have difficulty in understanding just how much
of a free-spirit you are. During this tour, you didn't even get
to finish it just because you no longer want to walk
a long stretch of ancient buildings. Hahaha
That's just the point, pa!:D

Shoveling some snow at Ontario, Canada (Dec, 2011)
I love how amazingly hilarious you are. I remember mum telling us how you
happily do your own laundry during your whole stay there just because
you just stuff everything inside the washing machine and whoala! In a
few minutes' time, your clothes are all clean and dry. It didn't even bother you 
that for more than 50% of the time you were there, you were only home
because of your rheumatism attacks. Lol

Chillion Castle, Montreaux, Switzerland (Dec, 2012)
I'm still amazed at how much of a child you are still inside.
You used to say that you've always wanted to see castles in real life. And 
according to ma, upon seeing one, the only thing you were only able
to say was "ganito lang pala yun?" Hahaha!
The architecture and the age of structures didn't even
amaze you. :D


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