A Tribute

Two years ago it was, when our lives were suddenly turned upside down. Two years after, my days are still filled with such poignant memories of my Dad. But, thankfully, the pain is slowly ebbing away. Time surely does heal all wounds; but with the passing of a dearly loved one, we are scarred forever.

Has it really been two years? Even my sister couldn’t believe that two years have already passed since. “Sobrang dami nang nangyari sa buhay ko…” she quipped. Indeed. If my Dad were alive today, wouldn’t he be so surprised or shocked to hear the following:

In the Philippines:
– GMA (Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo) won the elections. Dad was already bedridden during election season in May 2004.

– Two of GMA’s opponents are already dead: Fernando Poe, Jr. (FPJ), and Raul Roco.

– Pacquiao, his favorite boxer, won his fight with Morales. His life story is now being filmed by bloodsucking producers and directors who want a piece of the fame and fortune. While in the hospital, Dad was actually watching a Pacquiao fight. In between gasps and pains, he would manage to prop himself with a pillow just to watch every round; during commercial breaks he would collapse on his bed in exhaustion. Fighter talaga. He loved boxing.

– Hundreds of people died when a mountain collapsed in St. Bernard in Leyte this year.

In our family:
– Our house in Cavite was finally completed, and finally turned over to us. During his sane moments he was avidly talking about visiting our new house as soon as he became well again.

– Cush, his favorite dog, died barely a year after.

– A Christian fellowship has sprouted right at our very home – through Mom’s efforts, the Word of Life Christian Fellowship was created last year.

– Karen already has a little girl named Ria. And oh, she’s on the family way again. Another “apo”! Dumadami na ang angkan namin.

– Lai is back to studying again. Marami pa kwento, but I don’t think I’m allowed to write ’em down here, hehe. :)

– I did pass the evaluation for tenure in my institute. Dad would be happy to know that I’m still doing the job that I love.

– Baggy is already in Tsukuba. The shinkansen love affair has finally reached an end.

– Aya wants to be an astronaut when she grows up. She loves Chicken Little (watched it a dozen times) and all Pixar-animated movies. Aside from Tagalog, she speaks Japanese fluently, it shames us who have been learning (or trying to learn) the language all these years.

These are just some of the highlights, in a nutshell. In my mind I talk to him, telling him these things – and more. He is always in my thoughts. I still read his letters. But – dangnabit (to borrow Lai’s expletive)! I’ve yet to update his website.

To the greatest Dad in the world – may your memory remain forever in our hearts and in those whose lives you had touched. We still fight our own fights, like boxers in a ring. We face our challenges with courage and determination. We carry on inspite obstacles that lie our way, because we know that that is the only way we can show the world that your efforts have not been in vain.

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