Saturday, May 09, 2015

Dear Papa

Dear Papa,

I just want to thank you for the man that you were. You were not perfect, I know, but it made perfect sense to me that you were my old man. You had always taught me the essence of forgiveness, of just being happy, of just being simple, of just being broke and not giving up, of just being loved and to love more in return... and for breaking me and starting to pick-up the pieces as soon as you left.

I remember those days as a teen when I used to hate you. You were the person who I love to hate. I used to curse you for being my father. I used to pick you to fight me but you chose not to. I used to blame you for my fate. I used to hurt you. I did papa, I know. I knew it broke your being. It seemed that love was gone.

But I also remember when things changed when we had a good talk. When you asked me for a pair of shoes and I brought you to the shoe store for fitting. Your feet were so small Papa, we had to go to the kids section. I remember I was in tears trying to find you a pair. I still remember the feeling Pa. You had me realize how grateful I was to be your son. You suddenly changed my perspective in life. You suddenly made me realize that I was all wrong about you. I am not perfect Papa, but you made perfect sense to me that I am your son. We talked about being thankful and forgiveness that day Papa... It was a fine December day. Promise I won't forget that.

There were more days that I didn't visit you even when we were very near. Perhaps I was busy trying to make a life out of what I have. Maybe I was ignoring you. Last December we had a good talk. You asked me why? It broke me Papa and you knew what I suddently felt. I cannot answer you back because it felt so bad. I asked you "kumusta pa?" while I hugged you. You answered back... "I am old Jeeh. My days are gone and numbered..." You broke me that day Papa. I went home in tears that night Papa. It really felt so bad. It made perfect sense to me how you were so forgiving without even me asking for one.

You were sick Papa after that talk. You were feverish. You were complaining about your leg pains that you thought were just arthritis. You made me worried. You made everyone worried. I remember how worried you were about the expenses, how you told us that you were worried about JR having to spend all his savings for your bills. How you were worried about the money spent for your hospitalization... But it was more worrisome Papa when we were told you had cancer. I remember how it felt Papa. You were in pain. But it made more sense to us Papa, that we everyone learned the joy of just being with you. Mama really took care of you 24/7. All those years Papa, you guys fought almost everyday... but I remember the sight of mama taking care of you and it was wonderful.

We asked your firstborn to visit you last February Papa. I remember the expression of your face when you saw her. You cried Pa... but you told us you cried because your legs hurt. How we laughed so hard pa. How you brought joy to my heart that day Papa and to ate Melen too.

Papa, the past months, we used to joke around each other. You were stronger. You looked better. You looked the happiest. You looked healthier. You posed for selfies. You appreciate more of the small things. That fifty pesos or a thousand more didn't matter to you. You showed us Papa that joy of giving unconditionally and it made perfect sense to me now. Your pains and gains didn't matter to you anymore but the mere presence of your loveones did. I will always remember Papa the joy you felt when your best Ella came to visit you. You were the happiest papa. And until the end Papa, you made Ella realize that she moves on with her lost too, for good.

My siblings are the happiest too Papa. They got more stories to tell. Mama is the happiest too papa. She's got more love to share and tell.

These past week, you were sick again. We utter few words. I asked you to come with us but you didn't want. You were quite serious when you told us last Tuesday you wanted Joy to get married soon because you were going. I remember I didn't say a thing. Something was off that afternoon Pa. I kept my distance at the clinic. We stared at each other sometimes. I try to smile Pa, you kept your silence. I never thought that was your last Tuesday.

Pa, I saw your struggle. Pa, I heard the doctor said that we might lose you. But Pa, your heart still gave a chance to stay with you. Your mind was no longer there but your heart Pa was so strong and I could only hope I have that strength... it was beating still pa. You gave us a chance to stay together beside you. You gave us a chance to pray together Pa. And most of all, you gave a chance to look at the brighter side of life when we decided to let you go. It was painful Pa, but we had to let you go. You know Pa, you left surrounded by the ones you loved. You must be very proud Papa.

Papa, I have always told you how much I love you. I will miss kissing you Pa. I will miss hugging you until you complain that you had enough hugs from me. I will miss teasing you around. I will miss those jokes and banters Pa and you were good at that really.

It makes perfect sense to me now Papa... you had lived through rough rides but you were gracious every step of the way. You loved us best. We love you more Papa.

Kita ta sunod didto sa pikas, magdala ko ug redhorse. Padayon na Pa. Padayon na.