By Mardi Rustam
I love my father not because he took care of me while my mother was sick.
I love my father not because he protected me from rain and cold,
… Not because he bought me my first soccer ball,
.. Not because he taught me how to ride my bicycle,
… Not because he carried me on his shoulders when I was tired,
.. Not because he told me short stories when I couldn’t fall asleep,
.. Not because he bought me my first pet pigeon.
.. Not because he taught me how to assemble a simple fishing pole from a tree branch, a cork, a string, and a hooked pin,
.. Not because he took me to the barber for my first haircut,
… Not because he bought me my first Bata shoes,
… Not because he showed me the proper way to knot a tie,
.. Not because he helped me throughout the year in school with all my needs.
I love my father because he taught me the right from wrong.
I love my father because he taught me never to give up on my goals and my dreams.
… He taught me that life is not always as we want it to be but we must do the best we can in our journey through life.
… He taught me the principle of respect for all others.
… He taught me there is always hope in the future if we do our share of goodness.
… He taught me that when one door closes today, another door opens tomorrow.
… He taught me how to be responsible to myself and my family.
… He taught me to be respectable to others, and others in return will respect me.
… Because he taught me to stop smoking without yelling at me.
… Because he disciplined me without laying a hand on me.
… Because he guided me into the right direction without any verbal abuse or shouting.
My father never had a chance to go to school.
He was always working to raise the family, or in the army serving his country, he was a very loyal citizen,
He served both World Wars One and Two. He was hungry for education and insisted to be able to read and write,
Therefore he taught himself how to read and write.
I love my father because he insisted to register me at school to obtain knowledge and education.
… Because he taught me how to be a good citizen and to be loyal to the land that we live in.
He taught me to protect the country that we live in by volunteering in any area that our country needs.
These are only a few of my father’s teachings … that’s why I love him. I hope that I am at least half as good as my father was.
I love you, Bawa.