My Absolute Father

(Dipolog Blvd, January 2016 — My parents looked so happy, caught on guard.)

If there's one person I'm afraid of disappointing, disobeying, and arguing with, that'd be my father. Although I had several occasions when I disappointed & disobeyed him, I never had the nerve to argue with him. By then, I would probably be asking for death.

Ever since the world introduced to me who my father was, I’ve been learning the harder way. Compared to most daddies out there who spoil their little ones like giving them what their little mouths randomly blurt out, mine’s definitely not one of those. Everytime, I had to consult my mother first before I tell him what I want and what I need. At a young age, I always had to validate the weight of my reasons for wanting a thing or two. Yes, at a young age. As a result, I grew up overly conscious of my own father.

Absolute obedience is and will always be a must, no buts or ifs. If he wills it, he'll definitely do it. If he doesn't like it, he'll tell you what he's thinking straight to your face. My father is heartless like that, or so I thought.

(Oroquieta City, June 2014 — Merienda Time)

He rarely buys toys but if he does though, it will be worth playing for years. Lego blocks, scrabble boards, chess boards, cards, he approves of them. The king’s command is absolute. No Barbie dolls, playhouses, dinosaurs, balls, anything but them. When it comes to books, no matter how much the cost, I remember him promising me each time to have them shortly after. He’s amazing just like that.

Back then, I thought my father’s weird. Because he mostly chooses what has to be bought and played, I am mostly interested with my playmates' stuff. They got the toys that I want, they had the recreations that I like, I really am envious. I didn’t think there’ll be specific reasons as to why we don’t have the same toys. A kid’s imagination will only tell him he’s not valued enough to be declined of what he wants. Until I finished grade school, I didn’t think there’ll be reasons enough that’ll explain his behavior over trivial matters as such.

Well, that was then. I, now, realized why of course.

(Lopez Jaena, April 2016 — My “next brother’s” birthday.)

Years passed. During the times I feel unloved, God made a scene which finally answered the question of every child’s heart. There was this instance when I got to prove how my father valued me so much. I had the biggest accident of my life, which made me realize anything can happen in a blink of an eye.

It was me who slammed my father’s motorbike, with two passengers at my back, smashing the head- & tail lights to the asphalt road and breaking loose of both hand- & foot brakes. My friends had minor injuries, but I received the worst among us three involved. With face swollen which later resulted to blackened eyes, chin sliced it had to be stitched, arms mapped with scathed flesh, I walked towards my father crying and expecting to be reprimanded as I hug him. My mother so worried, I can tell she was about to break down. Yet what happened right there, surprised me.

He never said a word about it. Never brought that up. We were silent as we rode off to the hospital. Like a taboo, we never talked about it the entire week I was admitted, till I got home.

Silence seems to be the biggest comfort of my life that time.

Certainly, it was a haunting and painful memory knowing I had been a sight for everyone to see. Strangers and friends, even police officers crowd over me. I feel so small, I wanted to disappear. But it was also an eye-opener to the person I was living back then. My father did care, after all. Cared not to hurt my feelings.

(My father in his 20s, serving the military.)

He’s a 'soulja boy’. That’s a huge part of him I’ve always been proud of ever since the life began in me. Once one of the men who braved the rebels of the wild, wild south, he’s been to unsafe areas of designation, dozens of skirmishes and wars, and got shot too. Like the rest of the soldiers I knew, he had tattoos on his arms and chest. I’ve never seen a warrior without one, because my uncle also had his. I could probably be making up stories too, but I think soldiers tend to carry talismans or amulets with them to be protected from harm. Both of my father and my uncle had their own. I saw father’s, one time unwrapping it from a white cloth. If my memory still served me right, it looked like a huge canine from God-knows-which-animal it may be. A tiger? A lion? From the looks of it, it might just be a fierce animal. Like a big cat. Maybe, or maybe not.

Soldiers might have barbaric thinkings as such, but I realized they also believed in the Bible. My father and his companions can recite the entire chapter of Psalms 91. In case you have no idea, it’s all about the love and protection of God shielding them from the enemy’s mischiefs. This could be part of their training, but I’d rather think of the former. Soldiers were awesome just like that.

(Dipolog Blvd, January 2016 — Mama+Papa=Lyra 😊❤)

Life, dragged on for years. I am now three and twenty yet I still had the same regard for my father. If there’s one person I’m afraid of disappointing, disobeying, and arguing with, that’d still be my father. Always.




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