“Remember to lock your door before going to bed!”
“Will do, dad!”
“Be careful and take care of yourself. You know what I mean, right?”
That was his attempt to warn me about the intruders/strangers and perhaps boys :-) I nodded rapidly so that he would stop talking about it. I guessed being fourteen and sort, that kind of conversation just seemed too cumbersome especially coming from my dad.
It was our first time traveling together, in fact several thousand miles away from home, to drop me off for a high school. My brother always wanted to study in that town and I didn’t mind following his footsteps. That was the town where my father spent his teenage year when he first migrated from China. He lived with his aunt and her family. My father grew up in the small village in Tao Yen Village in China. He spent most of his childhood with his grandma and when the time came, he immigrated and decided to live with his aunt.
Even though, he grew up without much love from his parents, my father was known by his kindness and warm personality. His attentiveness and wisdom somehow still echoes in my heart. His endless love has shaped who I am today. He was always there to listen to us and stood behind what we had decided even though he might not agree with our decisions.
“There is nothing that I can give you but knowledge.”
“I know ...”
“Study well and once you can stand on your own feet, please lend your hands to your own brothers and sisters.”
“I will …” –That was my promise to him before he passed away …And I was eighteen years old.
Years later, I stood in front of his photo, I still could vividly recall all of the moments that I have shared with him. Even in that photo, his smile seemed so tender and his eyes were still so loving.
“Dad, I have taken care of my siblings and I have delivered my promised to you.”
Shedding between tears, “Aren’t you proud of me?”
“And someday … we shall meet again and I want to be your daughter again.”
I hope you enjoy this journey visiting my father—a loving man that will forever lodge in my heart. He may be somewhere in heavens but his memories will forever carved in my heart.
Happy Father’s Day,
Journey of Life