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Posts Tagged ‘remembering Dad’


Gosh, it’s been a while since I posted an entry here. I had a good time reading every day.

Do you know that if Dad has been alive, he’ll be 100 years old today? He was born on January 16, 1922. As I have said before, I celebrate his birthday and remember him always during his death anniversary. We lost him one December night fifteen years ago after a long battle with ESRD (end stage renal disease) and six months of dialysis. Until his death, I was able to talk to him. That was the time he remembered stories about his parents, our Tatay Ayong and Nanay Maria. My grandmother died when their youngest was born. I haven’t even seen pictures of her but my uncles told me I looked like her, even with some uncanny mannerisms that I inherited. Maybe that’s why I was so closed to them before.

I imagine those times that Mom, Dad and I would sit at the ledge of our garage and talk about anything under the sun while we watched some passersby. Dad was full of those advices that I took to heart. When Tatay Ayong died, his siblings looked up to him, consulting him in any major decision that they have to make. He had other half-siblings (eight in all) when my grandfather remarried. I’d like to think I was closer to Dad than to mom. It was only the three of us (my oldest brother), dad and I when we were in high school while mom took care of my two brothers in the province. I learned how to cook because of him. His half-sisters are all good cooks. He would instruct while watching me cook. That’s the way I learned those yummy recipes while growing up.

What a coincidence! Today, the memorial service of his friend Mama Julian was held in Australia this morning. It was a lovely tribute to a friend my dad was closed too. Wow, Nana Mina was so beautiful.

A picture of the four of them when they visited us back in 2004.

A hundred years, imagine? I miss you….still! 🎉🎈🎊

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Here I am again sharing some thoughts about my late dad.

We spent grade school in the province except Noel who transferred here in Manila during his last two years of grade school because be was the only one left there. The four of us graduated at the Univ. Of Santo Tomas Education High School. College life was also spent in UST.

I remember the summers way back then. That was the time we spent the summer break going to Manila to be with Dad. That was in the mid-60’s. Mom, my three brothers and I would ride in a Pantranco bus with two bundles of firewood meticulously gathered before our trip. We used charcoal and firewood to cook back then.

When we reached high school, summer days were spent in the province. I remember planting cashew nuts with Dad which eventually grew along the perimeter wall of our one-hectare lot. We also planted Formosa pineapples. They still bear fruits until now. Coconut trees are scattered all over.

At first, it was just the three of us, dad, my older brother and I stayed in our very small house in Quezon City when I started high school. Mom and my two brothers were left in the province. Do you believe that I started reading Mills and Boons pocketbooks when I was in high school?

Dad would bring home three or four pocketbooks which he usually borrow from the UST high school library. After a week, another batch is borrowed. It was where I learned more about those lovely places aside from our country. I worked for a while at the Humanities section of the UST Main Library way back in college. That’s where I learned serious reading because of the many subjects/books that I encountered.

Gosh, every year since Dad died, I would blog about him during his birthday and death anniversary. Perhaps you’ve read about those anecdotes that I have shared before.

Today is dad’s 14th death anniversary. I miss him…still.

🥲😒❤🧡

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“For some, life lasts a short while but the memories it holds last forever.

Every year during Dad’s birthday and anniversary, I would find myself blogging about him. If he were alive today, he would have been 99 years old.

Yes, the memories linger like they happened only yesterday. I miss the stories, the life lessons you taught us the values you shared but most of all ….I MISS YOU….still.

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All these years since I started blogging, I’ve written about Dad usually on his death anniversary and his birthday. Mom I think has forgotten that today is Dad’s  97th birthday. She forgets so many things now unless you remind her.

Dad left us one Wednesday night in December 2007. After so many years battling with ESRD (end stage renal disease), I thought we could still spend another Christmas with him despite the hardships we all faced while he had those dialysis sessions twice a week six months before he died.  Until now, sometimes I wonder if dialysis is really helpful . They drain your blood and put it back without all the nutrients it has accumulated the past days. Then another session of taking so many medicines so you could gain your strength before the next scheduled dialysis.  At his age when he died (he was almost 85), those sessions at the dialysis center kept him weak but we had to do the last recourse because we wanted him to still be around with us.

You know that kind of remembrance where you smile at the thought of those long ago days and you’re sad at the same time because you lost a loved one.

My youngest brother made this photo collage last year. When dad died, he collated all the photos in his possession and brought  home the Kodak Easy Share (digital picture frame) that we  shared to family members and friends who came to visit us. Just like me, he is a keeper of memories.

When Multiply closed shop, he copied all the photos I uploaded there and told me that anytime I needed them, he could send them to me.

Wherever you are Dad, happy birthday. I miss you….still!

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Your face –

That certain smile.

Your eyes –

They close in rapture when you laugh.

Did I tell you that I still miss your stories?

Those days when you recall everything.

And I am always inspired listening.

Now and then,

I dream of you –

And I wish we were together again.

I always love to ruffle your hair.

The white strands

So smooth to the touch.

I let my fingers touch your face again.

Only,

It’s your photograph.

(A tribute to Dad on his 11th death anniversary).

 

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Gosh, I had a LSS since early this morning while I was watering the plants in the garden. I was thinking of my dad whose death anniversary is coming near. It was eleven years ago since he left us, barely a month before Christmas.

This song made an impact on me when he died. They played it at the funeral while we had that procession going to the cemetery after a Holy Mass was held for him. These are just a few lines.

♫♪♫And He will raise you up on eagle’s wings,
Bear you on the breath of dawn,
Make you to shine like the sun,
And hold you in the palm of His Hand.
You need not fear the terror of the night,
Nor the arrow that flies by day,
Though thousands fall about you,
Near you it shall not come. ♪♪♫

Faith, hope and love manifested in a song.

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10401954_924312577592771_2347683313099135030_nIf he were alive today, he could have been 96. He left us ten years ago. Until now, there is still that void that I feel with his passing. Sometimes, I could still  imagine him reading the daily news from cover to cover. It was always his pastime  so when he was alive, I made it a point to have a daily supply of the newspaper in our place.

I miss those days when he would recall how he struggled  in early life so he could find a nice job to support the family. My three siblings and I all  went to his favorite university where he worked for more than thirty years.  I miss those afternoon when we would take coffee and light snack and he would recall the earlier days of his life, the hardship of being a working student, those times he was away from his parents and siblings  while he worked in the city. I don’t remember his mom, my grandmother.  She died giving birth to their youngest. What I only knew  according to my grandfather was that I looked like her.

We could talk about anything under the sun. We could talk about  family members who went away to find good jobs. His two sisters and a brother (through a second marriage of my grandfather) work abroad. Two are in  Spain with their families and one resides in Japan. I am almost as old as my youngest aunt.

I miss those days when I was in high school and it was only the three of us  (my oldest brother, dad and I). My mom stayed in the province with my two younger brothers until  our youngest transferred to Manila to study when he was in grade school.  The days when he would teach me how to cook…..priceless.   He would usually drop by the wet market  after office work and he would teach me how to prepare a simple dinner.  I was not just a bystander when he was in the kitchen because he would  just instruct me what to do and watch me cook.

I miss those days when we would spend lunch together when I was in college  with one of his co-workers.  Every day, he would buy food at the UST resto  before  my class ends at 12 pm then we would share lunch.

When he got sick with ESRD and had to undergo dialysis treatment, my older brother and I accompanied him to the hospital twice a week.  The days he was bedridden after each session of dialysis, the enormous medications he had to take to stay stronger.  the graceless time he had to wear a catheter for many months, I still remember them all. My dad was a fighter. It was so painful though to watch his deteriorating health. For each session of dialysis he lost weight.

We lost him one December night ten years ago.  He may be gone from us but he still lives in my heart and the memories linger.

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” 

― Elisabeth Kubler Ross (more…)

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Remembering. Always remembering. And it’s like a dull ache that never goes away but just stays somewhere in the recesses of the mind, never forgotten but remembered with joys and pains.

It’s Daddy’s 6th death anniversary today. Every year since I started blogging, I would always write about him during his birthday and his death anniversary. How can you write about the pains of losing someone so loved and cherished in your life?  How can you write about someone who taught you the values of living and taught you how to be strong despite all the hardships that life brings?  Why do you need to remember and cry in pain?  It’s because he will always be a constant presence in my life. 629906-R1-00-20AThe good  and lovely memories will get you through somehow and you smile in remembrance of the long-ago days when you needed to hear life’s stories and words of wisdom, things that somehow shaped your views on what life is all about.

If dad were alive today, he’d be 91 years old. If he were alive today, I know he would smile   and wonder why I am even writing about him. I know he would smile seeing  Nate, his great-grandchild, walk on his own and point to himself and say, “baby, baby”. Yes, Nate has added more words in his vocabulary. I know he would be happy for all of us and would probably say, “there is nothing like a grandchild to put a smile on your face and warmth in your heart”. My children are so lucky having known him as a loving, lovable, affectionate and a caring grandfather. They fondly called him Tatay.

Wherever you are Dad, I know you are looking down on us with an indulgent smile.  I offered a prayer for you today. I still miss you after all these years because you  hold a special place in my heart.

(note: this is my 1,350th post at WordPress)

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Had he been alive , he would have been 91 years old today. For the last three years that I’ve been blogging, I also blogged about him every January 16th so I hope you’ll forgive the sentimentality of this blog. I want to remember even snippets of long ago memories with him.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD. I miss you….still! My only regret is that, you were not able to see your first  lovable great-grandchild, a fourth generation Abuel.

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I can’t believe that it’s  only been five years since you left us. It seems so long ago, that day when you finally said goodbye.  Memories are sometimes tricky, they’re like a closed book that you only have to open to refresh the pages and the story in your mind.  Know one thing Dad, I cry because you didn’t have the opportunity to see your cute and cuddly great-grandson. If you were alive today, you would have smiled at the way we were all going gaga over our little Nate. You would have tried holding his tiny hands and marveled at the way he kick his feet when he goes hungry.  If you were alive today, you would  have regaled us with your stories when we were growing up and how you dreamed of us all going to your favorite university where you worked for thirty-two years.  I always loved to listen to them anyway even though sometimes you did forget that you told them more than a dozen times already because every story became more meaningful with the re-telling.

I got lost on my way home the last time I said goodbye to you.  I was full of thoughts with what you said earlier that day that you saw some of our relatives calling you home, Tatay especially. I dreaded the sound of the telephone and prayed hard that it would not ring, and when it did, I knew you were gone.

I used to listen to Josh Groban’s You Raise Me Up because of its meaningful lyrics but when I learned that they  played the song  during your funeral, it acquired a different meaning for me because I always remember you  and it makes me sad so I stopped listening.  But I also recall your fondness for classical music and your Johnny Mathis’ Merry Christmas 220px-Album_Johnny_Mathis_-_Merry_Christmas_coveralbum.  Do you remember, it has become a favorite too and now that it is Christmas once again, I listen to some of the songs on YouTube and picture you in my mind, listening to the old LP album on our small player.  And celebrating Christmas would not be complete without the music of Johnny Mathis 🙂  I am listening to it now and I smile and say in my heart, Merry Christmas Dad!

I miss you….still!

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