(phototakenbymein Camotes Island,Cebu,PhilippinesCy2013)
(A letter to my grandpa)
You’d been so stern to me
And I had been so fearful, obedient and respectful to you.
I might at first hated your sternly way of discipline
I might….hated you for being so cold
Pretending not to care
I might hate your over-protected type of… especially on me.
Your words had been the law in the house,
But never have I hated you.
In fact, it’s so unusual that you’d given me freedom after college, received awards and finally passed my licensure exam.
It’s unusual because I didn’t use to it.
I didn’t used to it because the feeling was new.
The feeling was new because it seemed empty.
It seemed empty because I realized that the freedom you gave wasn’t satisfactory.
It wasn’t satisfactory because it lacked the power.
It lacked the power because I could no longer felt that same love, care and concern you show every time your stern nature prevails.
Nevertheless, that was the first time I appreciated your way of discipline and upbringing.
Does that mean I miss your overprotected nature which in some ways had negative effects on me?
…which had taught me to be rebellious for joining restricted organizations?
…which led me of becoming an over-achiever both academically and non-academically with the wrong motives and intentions and that was to win my dad’s presence, acceptance and appreciation?
…which had taught me to run away from home?
…which had taught me to wish I wasn’t the youngest grandchild so you wouldn’t treat me like a baby incapable of taking care of its own?
…which had continually reminds me that my own father, your youngest son, so dear to you and a prodigal disowned me?
…which had continually stirred me to long for my own father, to continually wonder how does it feel of having him rather than you?
Every time my friends ask which or what my ideal guy is, it’s so easy to say, thus fooling myself
Since it is not which or what but “Who”
..and that who is you.
Yes you’d been so successful in moulding me.
You’d been a father of 9 but still you were able to manage to be a father to me, your grandchild.
Up until now, you’ve been reminding me of you.
It’s been two months since you left but I always see you in my dreams.
You’re not forgotten.
Why not? My biological father is alive but seemed dead.
You became our wall, always showing your strength even though it needs some weeping.
Yet, my only regret was not attending at your last wake.
My pride had eaten me up, I was full of rage.
I know you didn’t choose.
In fact, you stand by me, never left me…though not saying a word but your actions were enough to cover our distresses. (You’re such a man full of deeds than words.)
You stand by me…fearing that if you could miss even a second
I could possibly be hurt,
Or worse, I could hurt badly in revenge.
And you never let it happened.
You had a lot, wealth was sufficient though you never spoiled me.
Hence, taught me to toil telling me that a single grain of rice wasted is equivalent to one year starvation to the farmer’s family.
Though you can afford but because you wanted me to learn to labour, to learn the essence of hard work and to put myself in other’s situation so as not to brag of what we have while the others were lacking by making me accomplished a task any princess never did and that was to make a broomstick out from the fresh coconut leaves you gathered as a punishment. Uncle disagreed with your punishment telling it’s too much looking at my dainty hands and doubting of my capability for such laborious work. On uncle’s surprise I really did more than expected of me. The secret was I developed the happy heart while I was doing my broomstick. Uncle from time to time check on me at that time believing I was crying or complaining, but I never ran out of songs to sing. I just kept on singing and smiling while I was doing it. I didn’t know why. I just felt the essence of working and earning so hard. I’m only high school at that time, but I wanted to grow as fast as I could to know how it feels of earning one’s own living. And, I realized that was the sweetest punishment I ever received in my entire life from an earthly relative.
I will continue what you wanted of me
AS what you wished of me becoming a moulder not just a mere teacher.
I may repeat it a thousand times and I won’t get tired of it. “You’d been a father to me.”
Your love was more than I wished for. Others said, I’m so lucky for having 2 fathers—yeah who said I’m not? I had a grandfather and a father at the same time!
How I miss you grandpa.
Time can tell…
Time can heal…
Time can forgive and forget…
Time can release…
But I hope it could teach
So that I could learn to LET GO.
TO THE READERS:
Friends, I didn’t write the letter to seek sympathy. I write this to reach out to those individuals having hard times letting go of their loved ones.
It is true that we, all of us have our human nature’s matter of belongingness. Hence, we must also know that our souls need more (belongingness). It either belongs to lightness or darkness. Why am I saying this? It’s because when we’re in this world, we seek more of human love and material possessions. Please read Colossians 3:2 and Romans 8:5-17.
As of human love, we feel the love of the family, friends and other people, etc. But friends, earthly and human love is perishable but the love of God is eternal. Earthly father’s protection, love and devotion are limited but heavenly father’s providence is boundless, endless and limitless. See John 14:16-18 “…I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.”
Also, Philippians 4:13; 19 “…I can do everything through him who gives me strength; ….and my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”
For those who are still grieving upon the loss of loved ones, be happy. Your mourning must not prolong. Meditate upon this word: Romans 14: 8-9 “If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.”
EARTHLY FATHER VERSUS HEAVENLY FATHER
Our heavenly father’s discipline is more compare to our earthly fathers’ as the scripture says in Hebrews 12: 5-12:
“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, because the Lord disciplines those he loves and punishes everyone he accepts as a son! Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. Moreover, we have all human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the father of our spirits and live! Our fathers discipline us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. Therefore strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Make level paths of your feet, so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.”
And if you labour, work not for your own advantage. READ Colossians 3: 23 “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”