2 July 2011
Eulogy for my beloved father
Taking a second trip back to Manila within seven weeks was not an easy one for me, my beloved father left this world six hours just before I landed in Manila on June 18, 2011, he was 85.
Writing a eulogy for him was not a very easy one either, but only love can make me do what I had to do.
In my own heartfelt language, this is what I said -
...How do you say goodbye to someone you deeply love?
On the day my eldest sister called from Manila to inform my family of my father's hospitalisation, just seven weeks ago, I was suddenly struck by the thought which I have always feared the most - an impending separation. It was quite unusual for me to feel this way as Papa had always recovered well from all of his sicknesses before, most of them minor ones, sicknesses which almost rarely happened in his younger days, from as far as I can remember. For, to me and my siblings, our parents were embodiments of health and physical strength, both of them lived healthy lifestyles, which in effect, gave me and my siblings more time to share many happy and sad moments... and together with Mama, he tried to give us a normal family life.
Soon after that call, the decision to take the journey back home to see Papa was not an option, neither for the rest of my siblings here and abroad. And with our dear mother's support, we have concluded to do just one thing - to serve him unreservedly well and make him happy if we can, with all of his remaining children around him...
Looking after his comfort, and being with him every single night and day during his time in the hospital was probably the happiest moment in our lives as his children, for in the process we discovered what love is, in its purest form. Consequently, the experience taught us a very important lesson - that love for one's parents brings out the best in the human soul...the virtues of self-sacrifice, generosity, obedience, humility, patience, understanding and kindness, to name a few, have suddenly become natural to you. While at the same time, you come to realise that in both words and action, those virtues have actually been embedded in you by your parents who loved you...and now is the chance to give back what they have given you. Children then must be invariably grateful to their parents for this gift of giving which in reality is a most precious gift.
Dear God, thank you for giving us Papa...
Mama, thank you for marrying Papa...
Papa, thank you for the life that you lived, for being a loving husband to our mother and most of all, for being the selfless father that you are...
I will always miss your smiles, your eyes that speak of love and understanding that always tell me 'everything's gonna be alright', I will also miss your sense of humour...
You were an angel sent to us and now you're back to where you belong, in heaven.
Our separation is just in body but in spirit you are always with us.
We love you deeply, both in this world and the next.
My beloved Papa, goodbye...for now.