Everything I Know About Being A Dad I Learned From My Late Father


Recently, I’ve been thinking about how to be a dad. I’m in my 30s and most of my friends are new dads. So whenever I’d have this discussion with my wife, she would always tell me to ask some of them.

They would say, “Why not ask your dad?” My wife and I have been planning on having a family, and honest to God, I am scared. I feel terrified, probably because I’m not ready, though most people would say, “No one’s ever ready.” How I wish I could ask mine.

Unfortunately, my dad passed away back in 2013. As cliche as it sounds, the last time I spoke to him was not very pleasant. I was an angry kid back then. I was being selfish, not knowing my dad was already knocking on heaven’s door. I guess after eight years, that moment is my only regret.

How I wish time machines existed so I could talk to him one last time and ask him how he did it.

My father was the best dad I know. He would always extend his arms to help out people in need. I always thought that was his biggest weakness, seeing as how family and friends took advantage of him. Yet no matter how angry I and my siblings were with those people, my dad never showed his anger. Oh, how easy it was for him to shrug off negative emotions and look at the brighter side of things.

However, dad kind of did give in to those emotions in the end. I kind of thought he felt disappointed for how things went back then. We were in a ton of debt, he lost all his money on the stock market, and probably seeing everything he worked hard for being credited to someone else made him frustrated in the end.

I guess only he can answer those questions. When he died, my mother said, “Dad died a poor man.” But for me, it didn’t matter if he was poor—all that mattered is he died a great dad.

Dad would always find a way to give us what we needed, even though we had debt collectors at our doorstep. He always said that education was the only thing he could give us. He taught us that even if the world turned upside down, all my siblings and I would have is each other. He showed us his love in his own cool way.

Dad never ate unless everyone was together. He never showed us that he was a man of God, but for some reason, I always felt that God was with him. He was always so cool whenever I had my friends around our place.

He always had this amazing power that made people want to be around him and look up to him. I could list a hundred more reasons, but he was and will forever be the greatest man I know. I guess looking back, I got the answers I was looking for.

So thank you, Dad, Thank you for being awesome. Thank you for teaching me how to use chopsticks, how to drive, and how to change a flat tire. Thank you for never giving up on me when I failed that semester. Thank you for teaching me to save my money and not buy unnecessary things.

Thank you for throwing away your riches for us. Thank you for loving us so unconditionally and so selfless. Finally, thank you for being my dad.