Do They Read Blogs in Heaven?

Whenever I say that the earliest memory I have is the accident wherein I had my left arm somewhat toasted, I lie. My earliest memory is, in fact, months before that.

It was a Saturday morning. I woke up to see the house in complete disarray. It seemed like we had been robbed. But there was no thief. There was only my father, rummaging through the house, looking for something. That time, he had just undergone surgery. He had a nasty liver.

I went out to see a number of people looking at my dad on the roof. He was also searching the roofs. And he kept on yelling, “Where are my millions?? It sounded silly because we were poor and there was no way our family savings could reach the million mark. But my dad kept looking for his “millions.? Take note, “millionS.? Plural.

I was looking up to my dad on the roof acting like he lost his mind, giving our neighborhood a free show. My sister, totally mortified by the situation, kept on mumbling “He’s gone mad. He’s crazy.?

This was my earliest memory. I was four.

It never occurred to me that this very vivid moment would mark the beginning of my family’s transformation from being average to absolutely dysfunctional. Since then, Daddy started accusing my mum of hiding the millions from him. And because he thought he had millions, he didn’t want to work anymore, forcing my mum to work like mad.

It made my sister despise my dad. My brother wasn’t very vocal about how he felt about it. Me, yes, I used to hate my dad for it, too.

You see, the earliest memory I had of my father was the day he started accusing my mum of theft. The day he decided not to work. The day he gave in to alcoholism yet again. I never saw a “responsible? father. He was just, you know, my father. And a lot of times, I thought he did not have any significance in my life, other than the fact that I was one of his sperm cells.

Because my mum was working, my dad was with me as I grew up. He taught me a lot of things as a child. But I didn’t like it. Somehow, I blamed him for not being able to play with my mum because she was always tired after work.

Yes, I thought, he had no significance in my life. He was just a crazy housemate. An ornament. A decoration. A living “press release? for other people to think that we were a normal family.

It was like this for 19 years of my life.

And then, a bitch called “cancer? rattled our lives yet again. It gave the family the worst period of our lives. Soon, my dad succumbed to the disease. His liver finally took a toll on him.

It was exactly five years ago.

The eve of his funeral, I was told of a heartbreaking tale. It was about my dad.

They said that before his first surgery, a few weeks before we saw him on the roof, my dad actually had a “business deal.? Together with his co-workers, he made an unsavory deal with a group of people. My dad worked at a sea port, so you know what I meant by “unsavory.?

To cut it short, each of them should be receiving millions of pesos after successfully doing the “favor.? They did it. And yes, all of them got the money. All of them, that is, except my dad.

A few days before the payment, my dad’s nasty liver decided to be such a bitchass on him and got in the way. Talk about terrible timing. He was rushed to the hospital and was confined for a number of weeks. Where was his share of the money? It was with his co-worker — a woman. A beautiful woman, in fact, who had once shared a romantic relationship with him before he married my mum.

My aunts said that this woman had always been in love with my father. And she used this money to blackmail my dad into being with her and leaving his family — us, his family. My dad knew better.

He chose us.

He chose us.

But right after the surgery, my dad received a call from another co-worker saying that the money had already been sent to my mum. My mum never received anything from anyone. My dad believed otherwise. And the rest is history.

When I heard this, I just shrugged it off. Still, as far as my memory was concerned, he was not a good father to me.

Until I realized something very recently. He did have some significance in my life. A lot of wonderful things have been happening to me now, and as I was thinking whom to thank for all of it, my dad crossed my mind. Like I said, because my mum was working, it was he who taught me a lot of things when I was growing up.

He taught me how to write. I’m a professional writer now.

He taught me how to count. I never flunked a maths exam.

He taught me how to cook. I’m a great cook.

He taught me how to play badminton. I play tennis. (Hey, they both have rackets. Wag kumontra.)

He was with me when I watched my first film. I’m a Film graduate.

He read me TIME and Newsweek articles to sleep. I’ve just passed the Foreign Service Written Exams.

You see, a big part of who I am now is because of him. No, actually, a big part of me is him. And it’s not just because he was my father. But because he was actually there. He chose to be there. He chose us.

And never had I thanked him. Never had I told him how sorry I was for ignoring him. Never had I told him how I regretted not giving him a chance. Never had I apologized for not looking up to him since the day I saw him on the roof. Since the earliest moment I can remember.

That’s the most ancient memory I have. It was a Saturday morning. I woke up to see the house in complete disarray. It seemed like we had been robbed. Well, the truth is, yes, we had been robbed. I lost my dad right there, right then.

And it wasn’t cancer that stole my father from me. It wasn’t cancer that took that one chance of having a great relationship with my dad. Whoever did, I have a pretty good idea.

But wherever the thief may be — taking the Foreign Service Exams, perhaps; or playing tennis; or simply blogging — he is sorry. Very sorry. Believe me.

Comments

  1. Yoshke’s posts fills the hearts of many on tales of laughter, freedom, and expression…

    and there comes sadness, grief, and regret.

    I am touched by your post and reminded how it is that we come to never realize the side of our parents who often take the extra mile or even more, just to see us have better lives.

    Beautiful post..

  2. Nakaka relate ako sa post mong ito.. Until now, di ko pa rin matanggap bakit ang tatay ko napaka hina. Bakit nagpatalo siya sa pagsubok na kinaharap niya nuon. Gaya ng tatay mo, naloko rin ang tatay ko ng ka-trabaho niya at ayun, nagloko na rin ang isip niya.

    Di ko alam kung galit ako sa kanya. Basta..
    Okay na siya ngayon, wala ng sumpong, nasa bahay, as always.

    Hmmm.. it’s okay yoshke, I sense that you will be a good father to our children naman… (bumabanat) hehehe

    God bless yoshke!

  3. aww its sad… i never get to enjoy my dad’s company since he passed away when i was 10… he is a good swimmer… and now i cant even swim… im a daddy’s girl so super nmiss ko xa pero im closer now to my mom… haysss so much for regrets… at least you’ve realised and he will be happy to know

  4. I have no words. You shared your experience so solemnly and beautifully it went straight to my heart. And yes, I do think blogs are read in heaven.

  5. Tis got my nerve. Yes. This is the best post I have ever read from you. (We’re online buddies in multiply).

    Dude, don’t worry. They read blogs in heaven. 🙂

  6. So sad! sometimes there are things we want to change, rewind or revise but only to find out there’s nothing we can do to change the past. May your dad rest in peace.

  7. hey i discovered this because it won blog post of the year and wow, who wouldn’t weep when reading this? i mean the way it is fucking written. awesome… i have never read a blog that pierces through the heart. awesome. your dad’s proud of you. 🙂

  8. Reading this made me miss my father, who died because of liver-related disease/ Bit I think t’was cancer as well, they just hid it from me. They already have the idea how long will my father stay, they chose to hid it, until that day that totally broke my heart. Yung eksenang akala ko sa movie lang nagyayari, nakita at naranasan ko ng personal. it was my entry to Pagbabago contest, pero when I wrote it, buhay pa sya..

    -comicallydramatic

  9. People forgive especially when they loved so much. I’m sure your father is very proud of you. Gosh! I had a very emotional morning because of this.

    • I see that this post has won the best personal blog in the Philippine Blog Awards 2010, and this indeed is worth it. Way. If I were a judge, you could have won 10 times over. Unfortunately, I was not.

      I’m looking forward to more posts from you… 🙂 Don’t worry I’m easy to please. Hehehe!

      As for this one, I was touched.

      Congratulations!

  10. whew.
    got the same feeling (not love).
    anyway, learning to love properly is a challenge for every human being. in the very first place, love, itself, is every human being’s destiny (supposedly).
    kuya yoshke, aja! 😀

  11. never really thought i could read such a very beautiful post today. thanks for sharing us a bit of your life. you really deserve more than the award. you’re blog really is simply AMAZING..

  12. Thanks for sharing your story,, a little bit late reaction, pero wala naman sa timing ang inspirasyong naibiibigay ng mga bloggers! =)

    keep on writing real stories like this!

    God Bless.

  13. Waaaaay to rationalize our choices in life! Too bad we tend to choose to avoid communicating how we really feel. Had we just done so, we MIGHT have achieved greater mutual understanding with those we have issues with, sooner, rather than later.

  14. Someone must have warned me that I need Kleenex before reading this blog. This is probably the only personal blog post that made me cry. I think they do have wifi in heaven. I’m sure your father is very proud. 🙂

  15. thanks for sharing Yoshke and congratulations for winning the Top Blog Post for 2010 award (kaya ako nadala dito) maganda ang pagkakakwento mo at nakaka-inspire nga 🙂

    mag 3 months palang nung nawala ang tatay ko dahil din sa cancer, nakakalungkot pero naging paraan din ni Lord yun para makita ko yung mga bagay na hindi ko naa-appreciate dati at lalo na kung gaano kahalaga ang tatay ko

  16. I love it., it touches my heart & soul… When their gone you will know the importance of their presence… Always find the chance to say what you feel , time is a privilege we can once have 🙂 thanks!

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