Monday, June 17

A Daughter Remembers

So instead of writing the usual thank yous to my hubby and father of our child on post-Father's Day post, I wanna take some time to remember my old man.

I never had a good relationship with my father growing up. When I knew how to "fight for my rights" and stand firm on what I believe was right, our relationship started to spiral downwards. My mom never fails, till this day, to remind me that my dad did try his best to be a good dad when I was little. Despite their unhappy marriage, they would spend time with me, bringing me to parks, eat at fancy restaurants and buy the best clothes, just for me. Thinking back, was it guilt, or was there love?

I could never really feel love from my dad. I felt that it was because of my existence that my parents had to drag on their unhappy marriage. Till today, I never really felt my dad appreciated all that I had done for him. Maybe I shouldn't "complain" that I've done many things for him, but you know.. I would appreciate some appreciation. 

My dad is a very intelligent & knowledgable man. He is a Theological Studies graduate, was a prison counsellor for drug addicts, a successful businessman and was even a cab driver once upon a time! He knew how to lighten the mood of everyone during a tensed situation and be that joker. A man who stands up for his friends. A very hardworking man. He loves to eat, even till today with his illness, my chubby old man is a good buffet partner. 

However, behind closed doors, there were tears. Tears which can't be seen. I remember growing up watching my dad venting his anger on my sickly mother, who was on dialysis, each time his mother complained about how "dumb" my mother was and all. Paramedics were regulars at that time. I would always be with my maternal grandmother, cowering in a corner, crying and wondering what had happened. Maybe with all that crap I witnessed growing up, I became who I am today. 

We moved house 5x in 10 years. All because he said he wanted to "change". He never did. Because he never once had my mom in his heart. Many times, he would tell my mom, "I married you because you're a sick woman." I never understood why mom could tolerate such a man until I was 19. I only understood why after becoming a mother.

Even though my mom and dad's affinity never lasted long, , I know how much my mom loved him in their 23 years of marriage. The sacrifices she made for my dad, even I would not do it. The ironic situation? Till today, they are good friends! My mom no longer loves him, but she has forgiven all that he had done. When my dad was in ICU last year, he was so sick that doctor told me to be prepared. Year after year, old man survived. I remembered one particular evening when he wanted to speak to my mom in the ICU. I was standing outside. With all the breathing tubes and life support, he asked for my mom's forgiveness. No one can ever understand their friendship/relationship.

I wouldn't say I have the best father-and-daughter relationship with my dad now. I thanked him for making me a stronger woman today. We can sit and laugh about the lamest jokes but we still can't have a serious conversation. No matter what, he will always be my old man.  

Dad, though you were never a good husband to mom, I know you tried to give me a good life when I was young. I just wished things never turned out this way for our little family. I hope whatever has happened will remain as a lesson to all of us. I will never know if you have ever loved me for who I really am, but I always have you in my heart. I may not be the smartest daughter and have let you down a couple of times, but hey, I'm not perfect, just like you. I just hope that I can hear you tell me you love me one day, that comes from the bottom of your heart, and not for face value to show others that you love me. I hope that God answers the prayers of ours, and that is to see you walk again. 

Happy Father's Day. 

Happy Father's Day to my wonderful husband whom I appreciate so much for all the sacrifices you've made for the family. 


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