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Memories of My Father
Ronali dela Cruz
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My father died on September 28, 1996, at the age of 50. Looking back, I remember my dad as this tall, fat, and imposing figure who was always full of high spirits and incredibly joyful laughter. While other dads were into golf or drinking with their buddies, mine was a faithful man of God who regularly read his Bible and kept up-to-date with the issues of the day. His one inspiration came from thinking about the welfare of his family, and he made sure he modeled the kind of life he wanted us, his children, to emulate.
My dad never looked down on people, for as much as I could remember. As a lawyer, I expected him to hang around his fellow attorneys and discuss politics. But who were my dad’s friends? The ice cream vendor. The guy hawking "lugaw" (porridge) on the streets. The baker. He nurtured his mind by reading the newspaper regularly and books by such authors as Norman Vincent Peale and Dale Carnegie.
All throughout his married life, my dad stuck to my mom. My mom never had to question his fidelity. And I’ve never met a more generous person when it comes to spending time with us – his kids. This gave my sister and I the security needed to form strong and effective personalities, because we weren’t scared that our dad would suddenly bail out on us.
He was more than proud whenever we’d garner medals from school. My dad taught me to dream. As a child, I aspired to become a bestselling writer. Whenever I’d talk to him about my dream, he’d tell me, with conviction, “Just go ahead and write.”
Maybe that’s why I grew up with such indomitable confidence in myself, because I had a dad who believed in me. During the turbulent teen-age years, I remember not falling prey to smooth-talking guys because my dad was my moral center. I learned how to set standards when it comes to dealing with the opposite sex, because my dad has high moral standards for himself. I thank him for saving me from a lot of heartaches caused by entering into unwise relationships.
I don’t think I’ll ever forget the legacy my dad has left me. I believe I am the person I am today because of him. Thank you, dad.
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23 Oct 2009
A very nice tribute to your dad.
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