My dad was born on May 5th, 1963. If he was still here, he will be celebrating his 50th birthday. A golden age. But I guess God had another plan. My dad was ready though... Before he passed away, he was preaching in his Komsel and he declared that if God took him away this year, He is ready. He is ready. It's amazing.
I'd like to take time in this date, to reminisce how amazing my dad was in my life and things he taught me. Maybe he never realized that he taught me these things, but he did played a HUGE role in my life and I am what I am today because of him.
Communication is important
My dad and I is very similar in our characters. One of the most similar character we both have, would be our difficulty in expressing our feelings and emotions. We tend to hide our feelings, or even when we decide to show it... it would always come out wrong. Our words come out wrong, our actions come out wrong. We're just awkward with showing affection. Communication isn't exactly our traits. And the closer the person to us, the harder it is for us to deliver what is on our mind.
But, after going through many things with my family, I realized that the reason we could hold on for so long, was because the communication we had between each other. As I wrote in this post, my dad calls me almost every single day. We talk, email or message each other on daily basis. Whenever my dad is bored, he would either call me or my sister. My dad showed me that no matter how far you are, you have to communicate with your loved ones.
You don't even need to think of heavy topics to discuss... talk about the boy you saw at the mall, the weird advertisement you saw, the funny shopping offers you received... Take time, dial that number, type that message, read that email... anything. Anytime. Communicate.
Wear your smile
When my dad passed away, friends and family would come up to my mother and I, and they would start reminiscing the moments they had with my dad. And I realize one thing that a lot of people would say about my dad... They all say how funny my dad was, and how he would always be the joker whenever there are family gathering. There was almost never a moment anyone caught my dad being sad.
I remember the only one time that my dad cried (not because of God & worship), was when we went back to my dad's hometown to bury my late grandmother. Then the rest of my memory of him, would be him dancing weirdly, smiling and laughing really really (really) loudly.
He taught me to live life with a smile on my face. No matter how hard things are, no matter what life brings to you... smile. Just smile. And in a while, you'll get used to it. And smiling will eventually be a natural thing for you to do.
Be tough, young woman
I don't know why, but in my own theory... Because my father always wanted a son + I am the first born daughter, he applied the 'tough love' method towards me. I realize this, and even my mom sort of 'agreed' to it.
But no, it is not a 'military' kind of tough love. I remember when I graduated from high school, he moved me to Jakarta straight away. I moved alone to my grandma's house and I had really hard time adjusting to the new environment. I remember I had to study the crazy Jakarta public transportation system on my own... I hop into a bus/mikrolet I never been on, then I would write down it's route and how much it costs. I did that almost every day, in the hot sun and in rainy days. I went to colleges and classes on my own, fought with robber, went home late night shifts only to be disturbed and touched by drunken man, cheated by kenek and other unfortunate events.
My dad worried, he would called and constantly asking my whereabouts. But, he knew I had to learn. And I did learned. That is only one out of the many 'tough' lessons he made do... But, I learned that, even as a young woman, that does not mean you cannot stand on your own feet. The world is not getting any kinder, and to survive you gotta be tough. And I realize this toughness is useful in work and other parts of life also.
Marriage is serious business
I think one of the most important lesson my dad ever taught me indirectly is how important marriage is. In the beginning, my father wasn't exactly a 'dream husband' neither was he a 'perfect father'. But, God changed him. And he is definitely a changed man. Years passed by, and each day he is more alike with God and I couldn't have asked for a better example and standard of men in my life.
My father showed me that to be in marriage, you have to fully understand the commitment you are going to be in. That marriage is not merely based in 'love'. A truly holy & blessed matrimony takes time and it will only happen on God's very own will and time.
My dad showed me what kind of marriage I'd like to live in, and he also showed me the kind of man I want to be in my life... But on top of that, he showed me what kind of woman I would like to be for my future husband.
There are many other lessons my dad taught me both directly and indirectly. Those things that I've shared are only a few bits of what he taught me in 22 years of us being together. The lessons that he taught me, I am still constantly battling with it daily. He may be gone, but his lessons will stay with me, and I will continue learning.
Dad, happy birthday! I am glad to have an amazing father like you, and I am forever thankful for the lessons you taught me. I love you always and forever.
xo, Chrisya S.