To The Man Of My Life


Papa I miss you, but I know that you are at a better place now, looking from above, protecting us. You always made our whole lives as smooth as it can ever be, you did the same even till the moment the soil covered you up.

If anyone says there is no such thing as a perfect man, I will probably beat them up, because you are the definition of a perfect man; not only as a father but also as a husband to Mami. 

Ever since I was small, you always avoided picking me up (according to Mami) because of how small I was; being a premature baby and underweight almost throughout my entire childhood. You would always compare my wrists to the frames of the window or the chair of restaurants that I was sitting on. You would always hold my wrist up with just your thumbs and index finger and look at it as if it was an foreign object.

You knew how much I disliked Taekwondo, but I still went through with it because you would always "rewards" me with McDonalds right after practice. I am pretty sure it was defeating the purpose of sending me and Akka to Taekwondo as Akka needed to loose weight and I needed to become stronger.

Thank you for always carrying me out of the car, even when most of the time you knew I was faking my sleep. As much as you grumbled about it, you would still eventually carry me back into my room. Of course, till you deemed I was "too old" to be carried.

I learned how to wash my school shoes and whiten them thanks to you. Even though I was lazy to do it most of the time, you would still sit by my side and do it together.

I remember when one day you were "teaching" me how to cut my nails properly and to keep them clean; then all of a sudden, you accidentally cut my skin too. Can't remember much of how I felt at the moment, but I do remember how you panicked and quickly took a cloth to stop the bleeding. Honestly, I don't think it bled too much, but that was the last time you cut them for me.

I am definitely spoiled by you, Pa. These past few days, I kept recalling the amount of times aunties and uncles have said "OMG, you are such a big girl but you still sit on your father's lap" even when I was in my late twenties. Despite you were agreeing with them and grumbling to them, you still allowed me to sit on your lap and never pushed me away.

Of course, you started to push my face away whenever I wanted to give you a peck on your cheek as we both grew older. Wish, you would have let me spoiled you with love more Pa. 

Back when I was a teenager, it was our family thing to play bowling together on the weekend. We were pretty good as a team. Papa had his own style of throwing the ball half way down the bowling alley with a loud thud then "wrecking" all the pins nearby. We always laugh about how loud your throw would get and asked you to slow down. Mami would always go " Eh, Pa, slow a bit" and we will all giggle about it.

I loved how we would always high five when we got a strike or knocked down the remaining pins and how you would laugh with joy whenever we would get a split. Family sportsmanship was at it's finest.

Many people would look at you and say you are a strict person (your facial expression and that heavy mustache weren't helping)...well they aren't wrong, you were a strict person that gave freedom to his children by saying, "You want to do whatever, you can but just don't let me find out".

Hence, why I never did anything behind your back Pa. Even when I was going out with friends, you would always know who I was with, where was I going, till when I will be out and how I was coming home. Some of my friends had to sneak behind their parents and when I told them you knew where I was, they would always be in shock and wonder, how can it be.

That's the blessing of having you as my father Pa. You gave us enough freedom for us to explore the world in our own way but made sure that our heads and hearts were always in the right space.

Even till now, I dislike how you would always ask us if we were okay by threatening us, "Oi, what's wrong with you?" instead of asking us "Are you okay?"

But now, I am just sad that I won't even be able to hear "Oi, what's wrong with you?" anymore and making sure that everything will be okay.

I remember when Mami was sick, and the whole house literally turned upside down. Knowing how majority of the society works like, if you were another man, I am pretty sure that you would have walked out of the house, leaving Mami, Akka and me behind.

But I always thank Allah, that I have you as my father because you never turned your back even when things were so hard.

That night when all hell was let loose, despite all the commotion, you still were trying to find me as I hid in between the cupboard and bed; afraid that I will loose Mami and you at the same time. I could hear clearly, you asking Akka where was I, and when you found me, you gave me the most assuring/warmest hug.

I asked you while weeping, "Why Mami like this, where is Mami, this isn't Mami." and you (a grizzly bear) said warmly that "It's okay, Mami is sick, everything soon will be okay." 

After that night, I strongly believed that no matter what happened, our family will always be strong together as we had each other's back.

Honestly Pa, finding out that you had cancer back in late 2019, I felt like my life was being robbed from me. I couldn't think straight, I was messing things up at work because all of a sudden I felt I wasn't good enough to take care of the family if you were no longer around. 

I am so sorry for making you tear when I got into that accident. That night, despite you were the sickly one, you were also the first person to hug me when I reached at uncle's house. Seeing you like that, made me feel even worse of a daughter.

Sorry Pa. I promise to drive more carefully, to be safe and healthy to take care of this family.

I know towards the end, you felt useless but I can vouch on behalf of Mami, Akka and myself that you were never useless. If at all, I was the one that felt useless because there was no way for me to take the pain away. You gave an excellent fight against the cancer Pa. You inspired and dare I say still inspiring many others to win against the odds in their lives.

You may have only known a small fraction of people who are grateful towards you Pa, but reading all the messages that came through when we had to painfully announce that you had left this world, I can proudly say, you are like a magnificent pillar not only to our family, but to many others whom you have called friends as well.

One thing I know for sure is that, I want to live my life like how you have lived yours Pa; always inspiring, guiding others, being a reliable support system, putting smiles on other's face and genuinely just being there for them whenever they lose their way.

I want to have a heart big like yours, your strength to pull through difficult situation, and your silly humor to make other's smile.

I still have a long way to prove myself to you Pa, but I promise you, I will get there one day when you will be smiling proudly down on me just like you did when I graduated. The only thing is, this time I won't be able to get a hug or a kiss on the forehead. (But it's okay, I will get Mami to do that on your behalf)

This might sound selfish, but I really wanted you to give me away during my marriage, but I guess I don't have that privilege anymore. Or is it, you didn't want me to marry anyone Pa? Forever want to keep me as your spoiled brat, is it? Hahaha.. no matter what, I will always be your "manja pot" that will never change.

I told you before, even when I am 50 I will still act like a child whenever I am around you and Mami, but I guess now, it's just Mami that has to put up with me. Hahaha

You never allowed, Mami, Akka or even me to cry during your passing and burial, so I hope you don't mind me crying a little as I write this for you Pa. Your son-in-law picked up your silly jokes and antics, we are confident that you whispered that pants tearing joke into Azfar's ears and got him to tell it to us; because that's just the kind of person that you are. Always trying to help make things easier for others.

I am not sure what the future holds for us, but I promise you that I will take care of Mami and Akka just like how you did. I will become stronger, more independent and someone that others can rely on, the same way that you have raised me up to be all this while.

Thank you Pa for everything. For raising this manja pot all this while and putting up with my selfish requests throughout the years. You will always be my definition of a perfect man, a perfect father and a perfect husband to Mami (highly doubt she will disagree, but hey, she might have her own opinions, that you've got to ask her on your own)

I hope that my future partner will be somewhat like you too, if he isn't, go and tell him how to take care of your daughter in his dreams. If he stays despite your lecture and warning, then he is the one, but if he runs away, I will get the hint that you just want me to forever remain as your manja pot.

I love you, Pa!

P.S: Miss your voice, hugs and silly jokes.


4 comments

  1. Awwww. I am sure he is your guardian angel still babe. Hugs and take care.

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  2. Alfathihah. Moga roh arwah sentiasa di kalangan kesayanganNya.

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  3. I feel like I know him a little bit more, thanks for writing about him...I realise now that a man attains perfection when he leaves such an impact to his loved ones, as did your dad to you and your family.He is in a better place now, may he rest ����

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  4. Thanks for sharing your memory about your own dad to us. My condolences.

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