I miss my father. We haven’t spoken for almost a year. Yes i live with him, see him everyday, see to his needs from time to time. But he’s not really there. Old age [he’s 80] and a mild stroke have rendered him physically weak and mentally disoriented. It has become difficult for him to do even the simplest of things. He has become incoherent and struggles to articulate even the shortest of words. His vocabulary has abandoned him; his speech ability, reduced to yes and no, nod and shake of the head, or if not, mimicking last words of sentences he hears around the house. Although it is painful for me to see him this way, i cannot help but admire his tenacity. My father had always been stubborn and set on his ways. But i got a feeling his determination to cling to life goes beyond fear of death. I know it stems from love and his attachment to us, his family. I daresay the world is too much with him, and we are that world.
There are many things i miss about my papa. He may be small person but a large part of who i am i credit to him [and my mother of course]. He had his own fair share of weaknesses and failures. But i have long since forgiven him for those because he has proven time and again how much strength and integrity and intelligence live inside his tiny frame. He may not leave me any fortune when he finally departs this earth. But i am very proud to say that I am the result of one fine man’s upbringing.
I can’t help wishing though, that one of these days i will wake up to find him well again, specially during those times when i need his wisdom and encouragement the most. I wish we could argue again, hear his laughter and violent cursing instead of his feeble coughing that breaks my heart…see him repairing broken appliances instead of just shuffling along as if just learning to walk…OH what i’d give to hear him sing and dance once more!
There are things only a father can give to his daughter. Consider me a fatherless child already. All i can do now is to cherish these days with him and show him how much i love him, and thank the Good Lord for this wonderful blessing.
PS: Father passed away on 9 April, 2011. We, that is, my brothers, my sister in-law, my niece, my mother, my kids and I, were at his deathbed. Watching helplessly as he drew his last breath was the most painful thing for any son/daughter to go through. But in the end, we had to accept that he had to go and find rest in the Lord’s arms. Goodbye my dearest papa and thank you for the LOVE you have brought to this small family of ours. You will forever live in our memory.