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Wednesday, December 5, 2012

About Tatay, Of Principles, and Of Family: In Your Footsteps I Will Follow

I love 'em both! - kunwari "date" nila yan hehehe!
chaperon kami - hahaha!
"I am blessed to be your son. I am gifted that you’re my tatay."

Every child needs and/or deserves a father in the same capacity of having a mother. Luckily, I grew up having both of ‘em. A privilege I'm forever thankful. 

But of course, the absence of one doesn't mean happiness will be that aloof. There are exceptional situations where absence of a father is inevitable. There are valid reasons to that and I respect those who are under this category.

I write today because I suddenly thought of my tatay. Isn't it sweet calling your father or dad by the endearing word "tatay"? 

In our world today, present generations of father mostly preferred to be called "dad". Sosyal daw eh! It's seem like it elevates them to a certain status - that of the elites. But the case is different with me. Whenever I hear someone calling his/her "old man" by the word "Tatay", it's the sweetest thing to hear for the day. The impact to me is different. It's like it depicts nationalism, of being a Filipino and of using our mother tongue. Pardon me, I have nothing against those who call their father as "dad" or "papa" - it's just my personal prerogative.

Ok, since my main character is my tatay, allow me to chronicle some amazing things about him. By the way, this is the third time I will talk about or feature my father in my blog. I value family more than ever and I always look forward to spend quality time with them.

Ang sweet pa rin di ba? hehehe--
nahihiya pang mag holding hands- too old fashioned talaga - taken at Serendra
 Looking back, I can still vividly picture-out my "old man" when he was still at his prime. He's like our Hercules with his sculpted body, strong muscles, and good physique - hard labor trimmed his body. He's like Conan but not a barbarian - for his being a principled man and a man of honor. Overall, he's our hero for raising us up in a very modest way. I grew up so diffident, respectful, and obedient (naks binuhat ang sarili - hahaha). We used to have a "nipa hut" style of house in the province, having simple things and running a rice field short of a hectare. We don't own the rice field we're just tenant and so every harvest we need to give portion of the harvest to the owner. That's how life back then. 

Though we're just living in modesty, I can never recall that we run out of food. I mean yong tipong wala ng maisaing. I never experience that. Though we didn't feast with culinary standard kind of food but ours are made of native preparation - dito pumapasok yong native food that a certain place can offer. Click HERE to know some of the foods we used to eat in the province. . Damn! I miss these foods that much. 

So going back, my tatay is known for his big, a bit husky or hoarse voice. When he call us out from somewhere, you can easily tell that it's his voice you're hearing. His voice echoes unto our viens when he starts calling out (shouting) our names especially when we sneaked out of the house without permission to play with our cousins in their nearby houses. He would always get mad at us (my eldest sister and me - we're the first two children in our family, but we're four: my sister, me, and my twin brothers) if we play outside not asking permission from either him or nanay. We don't feel bad about it since it's a sign of being a good parent - protective and caring for the whereabouts and welfare of their children. And because it's not nice naman talaga to just escape away from the house. A young toddler would gauge him as a giant for his voice - hahaha!. Some of my cousins are quite apprehensive with him especially if my tatay is already out of his temper. But that scenario happens rare.

His then muscular physique , broad shoulders (this is where I got mine) and charming charisma are what girls swooned over him.  He's a ladies man- hahaha..ang dami niyang girlfriends ng binata pa siya. Maybe because he knows how to ride a horse - those days, riding in a horse is a plus factor for guys, at least in our town. Of course in the "looks department", he's full of that - hahaha! pogi ang tatay ko kasi may Spanish blood kami (buhatin ko na ulet ang bangko ko ha....wahaha!) His strong charisma to women makes my nanay a bit jealous..hehehe..just a bit because when tatay had his family already, he remained faithful to nanay. And no matter how many girls would tempt my dear tatay, no one had succeeded because he has this terrific self-control. He's a family man and he highly value our family.

You can always see him flashing his brilliant and care-free smile and hear his boisterous laughter whenever funny things are being talked about. He likes party - barrio fiesta provincial style. Advantage for us (me and my sister) since it's not hard to ask permission from him to attend a party or fiesta.

My tatay doesn't have an element of sarcasm in him but mind you he's so frank - direct to the point. But he does it with grace and sensitivity. If he know he's in the right parameter of reason and truth, no one can challenge him even a blazing sword or a gun. It is where my nanay is a bit afraid of baka mapaaway siya and siya ang maging casualty. It is because he never retreats from a fight but never did he waged one. Kumbaga, unahan siya at tatapusin niya ang laban (Naks! parang pampelikula lang). He would stand for truth even if it would cost him to be locked in jail or even death. Nakulong na siya just because he was framed up. Sa Romblon provincial jail siya nakulong. Binata pa siya noon. He was jailed kasi he firmly refused the crime which in the first place not of his doing. Pero pinakawalan din siya kasi he's innocent. 

He is a man of action. He speaks little but act more. He doesn't want to speak too much but when he does, be sure to be hit right unto your bones. He is a man of honor and he can keep highly confidential things (a trait I got from him). He said "Things secret in nature should be kept locked in your heart as a sign of respect to the one who entrusted it to you" -this is one vivid memory I can still remember from him every time he showered us with words of wisdom.

For someone who was born and grew up few years after martial law, it is very rare to see a dad, more so of having one who has liberal views in life. It is typical in a remote community settings, wherein children are not allowed to speak up to explain about a rift they are involved to. Many parents in our town or barrio would literally utter such litanies like: "Tumahimik ka kung ayaw mong tamaan ka! or Hintayin mong matapos ako sa kausap ko at malilintikan kang bata ka!" Ang lupet di ba! hehehe! 

But our tatay is different, way at par from the rest of the dads in our community. In time like this, before casting his verdict to us when we had our petty quarrels with our "kalaro", he would at all times, give us the freedom to express our side or explain the whole thing before his rod would slaps our behind (butt). He's not the type of father who would hit his children right away without even probing what the incident was. 

Being a disciplinarian yet liberal is the most and highly admirable character my tatay possess. He never dominates a certain conversation instead he listens well and only speak when his time is due. He listen more than he speaks. But mind you, when you ask him about his insights regarding an issue, whether local or national, his would be of genuine, unbiased, and fair judgment. He's always seeking what's truth in it than hastily concluding out of hearsay. He can't be paid with millions just to lie for something he knew was true. Nor will he ever trade his principles for something that could alleviate his family's financial status. He always explains that "Kaya ko naman kumayod or buhayin ang pamilya ko sa paraang disente at di nakakasagasa ng kapwa". 

Now, that I'm a family man and a new father, I will always look back to the same principles that my tatay inculcated in us. 

Thank you 'tay, for raising us with the right principles in life. To be humble, to display honesty, to treat others well and to share blessings and be a blessing to the next one in need.

Tatay, you are more than a father to me. I honor you for being our family's hero, for being a great dad, a smiling companion, selfless, a mentor, a leader, a great provider, a beacon of principle, a stronghold, a fortress. Words may run out as well as adjectives to completely describe how you are to me (us), but here's a few words to end this and pay my homage.

"Tatay you're a disciplinarian in a very liberal way and I'm forever indebted to you for the great leadership, mentoring and rearing us up as descent as you did. I have started my own family a year ago and this is so timely to let you know that I will always carry your words of wisdom to us and apply the same to my children. I know I can't level up your feat as a father but I will value your words as I start mine"

In two days time, I'll be celebrating my birthday and I just want to let you feel that I'm thankful to God for giving us a father like you. I will never ever trade you for anything in this world. 

In this birthday of mine, I won't wish for myself but I have one prayer and wish for you: "That God will continue to give you good health and strong body so that you can still bond with your apo until he grows up to be a young man. Lots were saying he's exactly like you."

I appreciate you more now that I'm already a husband and father. We love you and we will always be there for you and for our family. I am your proudest son in the whole world and I will honor you for who you are.

Oh, aminin nyo, medyo naiyak kayo ano? hehehe..or tumulo talaga ang luha niyo? hehehe.

Wishing you to have the same relationship with your father as I have with my own dad. God bless you all! 


  1. You are lucky to have a very loving and awesome father. With your great descriptions of him, I have this impression na idol na idol mo talaga si tatay mo parekoy.

    Tatay din ang tawag ko sa father ko. Pareho din sila ng tatay ko, tahimik lang pero pag nagalit nakakatakot.

    Cheers to all our tatays!

  2. Your your blessed to have tatay like him. Now its ur time naman na maging tatay sa anak mo. Good dahil mukhang may makukuhang traits na nakita mo sa tatay mo. :)

  3. Oo, nakakaiyak tong post mo! Really, I find this super sweet.. I call my father Papa, but I agree pag may narinig ako na Tatay or Itay yun tawag sa dads nila, na-amaze ako! Parang very ano kasi, very.. tatay! Haha, ang gulo ko! Basta ganun..

    Naku, playboy din si Papa ko nun binata pa, lapitin din kasi maputi at makinis, haha! Mega-selos din si Mama dati, natatawa ko pag nikukuwento nila.. At si Papa, hindi rin basta basta uurong sa laban yun, basta alam nyang nasa tama siya, haha! Maswerte ko na hindi ako napalo, alam mo na, bunso kasi!

    At dahil sa mga kuwento mo, I know magiging good father ka din kay Caleb! :D

    Akala ko birthday ni Papa mo kaya mo to napost.. Ikaw nga pala mag-birthday! Which reminds me, na di pa pala ko nagpadala ng photomessage! OMG! Haha..

    Happy Birthday! Naku

  4. this is so sweet jay. advance happy birthday to you and you're so lucky to have your tatay.

  5. @Fiel - Yes, he's on top of my list in the idol meter..hehehe..Ika nga "love you own" and "to each his own" hehehe. thanks :)

  6. @Arvs- Indeed, I am blessed. It is but fitting to give him all the accolades he so deserves. Thanks :)

  7. @Joanne - hehe..naiyak ka pala..hehehe..may similarities pala ang mga tatay natin hehe...Oo nga yung entry mo nasaan na? Last day na ngayon. pwede ka pang humabol until 1159pm (Phil.time) hehe

  8. Earl - thank you pare...sabi nga dapat sinasabi na natin ang mga good things while kasama pa natin sila...kaya ako ginagawa ko na hehehe

  9. @Michy - Thank you Michy - di ka nagpasa ng entry mo..hehehe!

  10. what a sweet post jay, well im glad to hear na maganda yung relasyon nu ng dad mo
    the way you describe him, parang perfect dad talaga siya no wonder kung san ka nagmana jay haha
    pero in my case i must admit i hate my father and our relationship was not in a pretty good shape
    well i wont go into further detaiks haha too personal haha

    going back to the brighter side two days na lang pala parang naeexcite ako ha

  11. hindi ako masyado naiyak kasi may halong comedy ang kwento mo umuurong eh..hehe.. nakakatuwa ang tatay mo kasi party goer din sya.. through this post i can see that you're really proud of your tatay and yeah we should be proud of them!

  12. Mecoy - Thanks parekoy! He's my ideal standard for a father. Sabi nga "to each his own" hehehe... Quite sad to note that you don't have a good relationship with your father. And I won't pry either since it's a private matter to you and I respect that. Hintayin ko nalang na mag open up ka (kidding) hehehe.

    One day nalang at birthday ko na! December 6 na ngayon mode na ako hehehe

    Well, if you're speaking of the date for the announcement of winners, yeah you're right 2 days nalang..hehehe..keep fingers crossed! hehe

  13. @Pink - hehehe...di ba natuloy ang pag-e-emo mode mo? LoLs...hahaha..sinadya ko para di masyadong heavy ang sinulat ko hehehe..thanks!

  14. nakaka touch naman.... naalala ko tuloy father ko.... tahimik lang din siya...

    nakaka emote na nakaka aliw hehehe....

    nice one ^^

    Kapag ganitong topic... dami kong naaalala ..... hehehe

  15. aw, I'm so envious. My dad and I are not in good terms. Tsk! I;m happy that you had such a wonderful father Kuya.

    I'm back!


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