I am a 24 year old registered Medical Technologist. I am a graduate of one of the most prestigious medical schools in the Philippines and finished secondary school in an international school as well. Growing up with a strict dad when it comes to grades, I excelled because I wanted to make my parents proud and partly to impress others around me.
I grew up not close with my father. It was difficult for me to open up to him about anything personal. As I went through college and matured, I learned so much about my dad, moreso about his heart. The heart of my dad is filled with compassion, patience, generosity and selflessness. He has always been the breadwinner not just of our family but also our extended family. My dad runs a junkshop who operates with big corporations and its always been he and my grandmother running that since they started it, especially when my grandmother passed away. The weight of the family expenses, debts acquired over time and the struggles of keeping the family business afloat has been and until now is on my father’s back. Randy is a man of resilience, strength and courage. He would do anything for his family even if it means humbling himself to others so that he could get that next loan. Throughout my college life it was particularly challenging for me because that was the time the business was at its lowest. It got so bad that the last year of my schooling I wasn’t even enrolled at the second half of the year, our dean ordered the hospital I was interning in not to accept me for duty until I am enrolled. It was so difficult for me to see my dad juggling his responsibilities at home and with his sibblings’ families (our extended family living in our late lola’s house) knowing that if there was money, surely my enrollment would have been paid a long time ago. It was most humbling. Other than that, whenever we had activities in school or special seminars we wanted to take to help further our studies or if I wanted to travel with friends, my father was always supportive. My siblings and I always made sure that whenever we needed requirements for school we would save for it so that we could in our own way help our dad.
Randy, my dad, is the youngest among 5 siblings but he is the one bearing all the problems in running our business. All the stress and challenges in running it he endured alone. Even if some of our family members are helping him out, I would still say that my dad is the only reason that our business has not closed down yet despite the convincing of his siblings to sell out and split it among them. My dad, I must say, has been the most unappreciated in the family as it is sometimes difficult for us to show our appreciation to him in ways that won’t be too “OA” or “corny” because we’re not the type to be showy with our feelings.
I hope that my dad gets chosen and as he receives and reads this, I hope he will know how much ALL his efforts for me, mom, my siblings and our extended family is etched deep into our hearts. And no matter what, it is fact that ALL we have achieved, all that we are, somehow God has blessed us with a father who is just one of a kind, imperfect yet just the right one we need and God has used him to mold us to be the best that we can be.
Thank you Papa! We see you and all you have done for us. Your sacrifices, your strength, your driving us to school and picking us up every single day until the day I graduated and surely that’s how it is going to be until my siblings will graduate. Ranze, Sheena, Mama and I love you more than you know.