Dear Asian Father,
It’s been more than 2 decades now.
You spent many years wishing Time would hurry up, and another few more wishing it would slow down. Then we happened, and you got too busy to realise that the past 2 decades were faster than you could have ever imagined.
How was the past 20 years?
You carried us, and watched us fall. You raised your voice, and raised your hands. You thought we would never be stronger than you, and then you realised you were getting weaker.
Do you know what’s been happening, Dad?
You were busy trying to be the man you’ve always hoped you could become. You also showed us many things, but you forgot some.
You taught us about authority.
You taught us how to acknowledge authority, and you showed us what rules and regulations meant.
You taught us to never disregard authority, and to fear it when we try to be funny.
You taught us about consequences, and facing them.
You showed us how, despite all that, Mother’s the real boss, and that it’s ok.
You taught us how hardships outside and at work didn’t need to be mentioned.
You also taught us that family is the one and all, and it’s ok to suffer a little for family.
But you know, Dad,
You forgot to teach us that the world was going to be so unforgiving.
Beyond your piercing gaze and unrelenting interrogations, you were always there to catch us when we fell. Your arms were always the strongest arms.
You forgot to teach us how to pick out the most fashionable pieces and trendiest styles.
But you showed us that we could be neat and classy whenever we wanted, with the right pieces. You showed us how to carry ourselves in our skin, and how to feel good in our favourite belt from 5 years ago. You showed us how to always look good in clothes that have been worn many times over.
You forgot to teach us how to show affection.
You forgot to teach us that love can be gentle too.
But you gave your strength and your will. You shouldered our weight and dropped your precious tears for us. You never needed to be the angel, but you were always there to fight for us and hold us back, to bear the brunt of harm and protect us from danger. We never saw your love, because you were always behind us. Unwavering, you were always the strongest pillar.
You forgot to teach us that sometimes, mistakes can be overlooked.
But we’ve grown to become fine members of society, understanding our responsibilities and admitting our mistakes. We no longer expect our mistakes to disappear if we run, and we’ve learnt to make up for them. We’ve learnt to appreciate chances and the grace that we may receive from others.
Even though you generally forgot to show us that we could have senseless fun together.
And even though you generally forgot to show us that we could be teammates.
Yes, you forgot to teach us that you were the best teammate we could’ve ever had.
All these years weren’t for nothing.
You were Hercules, you were Superman. And you did well.
You were already The Man long before any of us knew.
We love you, Dad.
To many more years of showing each another who’s the boss,
Happy Father’s Day.
Featured image credit: Operation Warm Wishes