Tomorrow is Father’s Day. I actually don’t know how I feel about it now given the following reasons: 1) My Dad already passed away and 2) my son doesn’t have one.
For the past few nights, I have been trying to remember the last time I made Father’s Day special for my Dad. Unfortunately, I cannot remember. What I could remember was one of the promises I made to my Dad that was not fulfilled and, now, will never be.
My Dad taught me how to drive when I was in college. And I think I gave him no choice in that matter because I was already about to enroll myself in a driving school if he still refused to teach me. Eventually he did. He took me to LTO and assisted me in processing my student license, too. I was the eager person who wanted to learn but he was taking his time to teach me. I think it was because he knew that I have the tendency to become reckless. LOL! Well, he wasn’t far from the truth. He then started badgering me to get my driver’s license. He said that there’s no use learning how to drive a car if I don’t have a license.
When I started working in the big metro, my target was to save up for my own car. We were already talking about what kind of car to get, what my target budget will be and all that. While I was getting excited about the prospect, I think he was getting worried. 🙂
Given that I have a personal issue dealing with government offices, I postponed getting one. I remember telling him that I’ll get one when I am about to buy my car.
For 10 years, he badgered me to get a license. And I kept pushing it out. Then on his birthday in 2012, I told him that I will be getting my license. I thought he would say something like, “Finally!”. Rather, he asked, “so when are you going to buy your car?” Hahaha! I told him I was targeting end of the year even if I haven’t really planned it yet that time.
As soon as I got my license, he kept asking me when will I get a car and I kept telling him the same answer. But I felt pressured when he started saying that he wouldn’t last until end of the year. I worked long hours, saved most of my overtime pay, checked out used cars for sale ads online, renewed a loan for additional funding. And every payday I would tell my Dad how much I still need to get a decent used car.
As months passed by, my Dad’s health deteriorated quickly. It was scary because he was confined in the hospital almost every month. Then came August of that year. My brother called to tell me that Dad was in a critical condition. From that moment on, I was on overdrive, so to speak, in terms of coming up with my car budget. By September, I only lacked about 40% of my target.
I remember talking to my Dad on the phone one day and we were discussing about cars. I said that the target was still by December but I was actually targeting to get one earlier than that. He told me that I should get one by October and I should leave the car with him first so he can teach my Mom and my siblings to drive. That was when I made a promise.
I told my Dad that when I got the car, I would take him out on a date at John Hay Manor where we will have coffee and snacks while enjoying the pine scented afternoon breeze then I will drive him around town, going to the places that we used to visit when I was younger. And he said he would love that. We were both so looking forward to it. And I could hear the excitement in his voice.
I planned the perfect date with my Dad in my head and it would be more than what we talked about. I was planning to surprise him by going home with a car a lot earlier than he was expecting. Then we will have breakfast at home, have lunch where he wanted, drive him to John Hay and treat him to an afternoon coffee and snacks at The Manor where we will have our heart to heart talk of some sort. I can even remember what I wanted to tell him and talk to him about until this day. Then, afterwards, I’d bring him to the top of one of the hills in Baguio in the early evening to watch the city lights before heading home.
By middle of October, I was only about 20% short of my target. I was already eyeing a car to purchase as well. I was waiting for payday so I could complete the budget. However, a few days prior to completion, my Dad passed away. And with him went the perfect date that I was planning.
I never got to bring my Dad on a real father-daughter date. I guess I was too late in planning it. There will never be a time when I could tell him, “let’s go on a date, Dad.”. My only consolation, I guess, is that I was able to thank him for everything he’s done. I was able to tell him I love him before he passed away.
I guess what I could do once I get my own car is to continue with the planned date on my own and dedicate the trip to my Dad instead.
You’ve been gone for almost two years now but there has never been a day that I forgot about you. Thank you for everything. I love you and miss you so much. And I think that says it all.
Happy Father’s Day, Dad! I hope you are happily watching over us from up there. One day, when we see each other again, let’s go on that date that we have planned. 🙂
Love, your daughter Liz