Friday, February 11, 2011

Sunny Side Up (Finale)

First Part
Second Part

I would like to think I made the right choice: that leaving you was necessary for my mother and my sister to enjoy a good life.  We both knew the business was crumbling,  but instead of rallying the family to your defense, you chose to stay with your new mistress instead.

Your physical absence left a festering wound. At 22, I had to look after the family - a role you have not prepared me to take before.  Learning took weeks, but it would take months before a company would actually hire me. And when I finally received my first salary - a meager sum I have worked for six days a week, I began to see you as a nuisance, a stinking remembrance that fed my desire to succeed.

The Fullmetal blog bore witness to my hatred. I said words, thankfully, you never heard.  You felt the revulsion steaming from my skin, and with humility you accepted your place as an outsider in my life.  I remember that day when you sent me a text message.

Nanghihiram ka sa akin ng 150 pesos. I left my workplace in Pasay just to see you at home and when our eyes locked, you could not look directly at me. That was the day you told me calmly, the publishing house was no more.

You passed by the house a few more times but I was able to avoid your presence because of work. Without a business to look after, you aimlessly wandered across city.  Had I known how it felt - a king without a realm - an eagle with crushed wings - a life project dissolving in thin air - I would show more empathy.  But a month before, mom was rushed at the hospital.   We chose to deny you that knowledge, which you will regret the moment you learned.  Still reeling from the trauma of that nightmare, I didn't even speak to you during Christmas and New Year.

But then, a chance encounter would allow us to meet again. It was my day off when you paid a visit. I remember hiding inside my room, but the maid had already tipped you. Instead of getting mad, you asked for a kiss, which I exchanged for a hug. You never spoke a word - never complained about my cold treatment. You left the house without a word.

That would be the last time I would see you dad. For all the disrespect and pain, for all the hatred and insolence I showed, you still tried to reach out and return.  The truth was, mom and utol were willing to accept you, but I was the one who threatened to leave should you decide to go home. I saw you as a burden. It didn't matter if your spirit was broken.  Your sister could take care of you.  In the end, my heart softened after I learned that your new family was ignoring you. 

You were nothing to them after all.

One night, we had an SMS conversation. That was after dropping my partner in Monumento and I was riding an FX bound home.  You asked me if I was interested in owning a second-hand motorbike, an offer I politely denied. We had a pleasant talk dad. I even thanked you and reminded you that I'm too old for bikes. It would have been the thawing of our relations, a chance to mend a bitter past.

But our reconciliation came too late. The next time I would hear from you was in the form of a phone call from your sister.

"Hello J. Alam mo number ng emergency room ng Manila Doctors? Na-stroke ang papa mo... mukhang malala ang tama eh. Kailangan kong malaman ang number ng doctor niya doon!"

October 26, 1956 - February 9, 2005

Lying on my bed... somehow made me wonder about my feelings.

I felt nothing towards him when he was here, in fact I just want him to leave the house the moment he's finished with his business.  But when he left, I suddenly felt a cold dose of emptiness emanating within me. Between feeling guilty and heartless

Why am I saddened when he left?

Father and Son
Fullmetal Dreams
January 25, 2005


orally said...

heartbreaking..if only we could turn back time.

Anonymous said...

Finally, everything has been taken out off your chest and it is good. We are products of our past and we can learn from it. Maybe, the one thing that your father has not learned in this life - is what matters most. In the end, he was alone with the guilt of not being there with you and your family. We cannot have everything in this world and sometimes we have to forego many things and persons in our journey in order for us to hold on to the most important...Be happy today and say a little prayer for his peace in the afterlife...

Ms. Chuniverse said...

Sad. Despite what happened, bonded for life na kayo. Tatay mo pa rin sya eh.

Mr. Hush Hush said...

:( i'm also not close to my father, Mugen.. I feel the same hatred you do.. and the entry made me think.. really think hard. This is something..

hard2getxxx said...

nakaakiyak naman to kahit may ginawang kasalanan ang isang ama eh tatay pa rin natin siya he gave us life

Louie said...

My father and I had an icy relationship during my early years. Though I am the only son who stayed with him throughout, the stepmom built bridges to ensure that I will never enjoy his presence.

It wasn't until I moved out after high school and my son came when we had a more efficient relationship.

I'm not sure how to put my words here. If your father will only see how you have grown very strong, plus the fact that you have cultivated the torch of writing he has passed on you, I am very sure that he will be very proud of you.

Nalulungkot ako sa entry na ito. Of all your recent entries, this one will always remain the closest to me.

Blessie Adlaon said...

You have this gift for relaying stories, M. This story made me cry, which is somewhat strange because there is nothing in my life that I could relate to it. It's so sad, I wish it were fiction :-(

Sean said...

Naiyak ako sa kwentong buhay mo, Master Mugs. Andami kasing kaugnayan sa buhay ko. Ang kaibhan lang ay kami pala ang pangalawa at itinago ito sa amin. Nasira kaming magkakapatid nang malaman namin. Di rin ako malapit sa ama. Nang ma-bankrupt ang negosyo niya, kinain siya ng depression at lalong walang pagkakataong mapalapit. Wala rin masyadong closure nang siya'y pumanaw. Pero hinahanap-hanap ko yung ugnayang hindi ko nakita at naramdaman, pero laging andiyan. Di nila ako nakitang umiyak. Dun na lang nang mapag-isa ako sa kotse. Sorry haba nitong comment ko parang naki-blog na!

jc said...


Kane said...

Sometimes, the lessons come too late. For others, they never come at all.

Mugen, I hope you have found / will find peace with the memory of your dad. Sometimes, I think we can be too hard on ourselves.


red the mod said...

"A son is the promise that time makes to a man, the guarantee that every father receives that whatever he holds dear will someday be considered foolish, and that the person he loves best in the world will misunderstand him."

The Rule of Four
Ian Caldwell & Dustin Thomason
2004, Published by Bantam Dell

I've already told you this last year, a few days before your dad's death anniversary. The words still resonate as a truism.

I realized it was not meant as a discouraging notion, nor as conceding to the realities of generational gaps. It is proof that human will has its pitfalls, but despite the inequity of emotion and affection, we still do; beneath qualms and squabbles, the misdemeanor and subversion, love our parents.

I never really had a parental relationship with my parents, they've treated me like an adult from a young age, maturity expected from my frail frame. We've had our bouts, a lot of which to intense for this platform to speak of, but in the end, I still do love them. And they, me.

We must, we are implored by the blood that runs through our veins, to possess an affinity towards them inexplicable but real. For to love them, is to love ourselves.

But sometimes you just have to let go. However distinctly sharp the thread fate has weaved for you and your relationship with your dad, there is atonement in the memory. That you ended it in good terms, even if only through technology.

You have made up for it. By how you have chosen to live your life. He may not be there to see this unfold, but he knows this.

Be well, brother.

Nishiboy said...

the lack of a proper resolution.

this makes want to actually talk to my dad.

Spiral Prince said...

I can only imagine the immensity of what feelings and mental burdens you went through, Mugenboy(can I adhere to this petname?), and I do hope that you've forgiven yourself as much as your father forgave you. It seems that he bore you no ill-will, given that he bore your ire without retaliation and that the two of you did get to reconcile with each other.

daniel said...

Grabe. I'm really speechless. I believe that "forgiveness" is the word. Although, it might take time. But I know it will come.

Godbless sis' Huggs : )

Kiks said...

orally got to it, first...

indeed, heartbreaking. a silver lining though was the fact that you two had a pleasant talk that last time.

i hope you are at peace. as he is.

Pyro Phoenix said...

Heartbreaking. And it's good that I am getting lessons from what I just read. If I were to put my situation in the story you just shared, mine is still in the middle. Pero I'll keep what you shared here in mind. I could use it someday.

Your dad is now in peace. All will be well soon, I hope. God bless. :)