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Shortchanged? Not... A Father's Day Thank You Message

My post on father’s day is a little bit late.  But here it is:

I have always been envious of female friends who have great relationships with their dads.  Because that is something I know I could have, if only my dad lived much longer. 

We have always been close.  It is through him that I’ve discovered my love for words and reading and writing.  Much of my vivid childhood memories with my dad are spent drinking coffee and solving crossword puzzles.

My dad encouraged me to participate in school activities.  He was there when I first joined and lost in a declamation contest.  “Try again” he said, “but this time, make sure that you get better”.  I did get better, only a little too late.

He took me to his travels, I was not yet 7 but I have been to some faraway places I don’t even remember anymore.  Memories of these trips have faded in time.  But they made me smile nonetheless.  

And he disciplined me. A lot. 

I guess as with any child I hated being punished. I do not understand why harmless things like making my sisters cry and eating street foods would constitute a close encounter with my dad’s leather belt.

But as I grew older, I realized that some lessons are better learned the hard way.

And that the seemingly “harmless” things you do when you are young will most likely escalate if not checked early. 

So I grew up hating bullies and would only eat foods that I deem to be clean and safe.

This and my love for great stories and word puzzles are my dad’s greatest legacy to me.

He might have died young, but the lessons he has imparted to me will not.  I will make sure of it. 

But there is also a new lesson that I shall convey: 

Parents are responsible for raising their children.  But these children, when they grow up are responsible for themselves.

We should never blame our parents for the kind of adults we turned out to be.  People would often ask me, “Do you think you are like this because you did not have a father?” My answer have always been “I wouldn’t know”. 

And I guess, no one would. 

My dad died when I was young.  But his short existence has not shortchanged my life.  On the contrary, having known him a short time made the experience much more memorable, the journey worthier , the memories richer and the lessons, so much valuable.

For this dad, I thank you.
Happy Father’s Day!

Note: Photo courtesy of


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