Letter to Heaven ~ You were absolutely the very best.

Dear Dad,

I really don’t remember the last time I wrote you a letter. But at least I am glad that I ever wrote you one, that one that was delivered by Mum from school. I had just started my first year of high school. I was only sure that you loved reading, just like you loved writing, and you loved reading that letter. Frankly, I can’t even remember what I wrote, but am so sure that whatever came in there was straight from a heart that truly loved you.

Oh, how I wish I could trace it!

So, I thought I would write you another one, this time I will send it with the parcel that will go direct to heaven. Unfortunately,  I know you won’t read this, but I have a feeling you will still understand, somehow you will feel the words, you will definitely feel the love.  Well, since  you left, I have grown, we all have grown up.  I lately admire the kind of person I have become, am quite sure you would be more than proud, even if you could probably say it after so long…I still know.

Today is my very first time to do such a thing, write anything about your life (it has not been as easy)  but am only grateful that I braved through. For the past years, I only tried but could never find the words. But I want you to know that just because I didn’t do it earlier, or that I don’t do it so often, it doesn’t mean I don’t love you…No! I do, I even miss you so much, but just that the thought of the plain truth would not let me bear the reality, or even write about it. After this, I will probably write many more of these.

Oh, how time flies! I can’t imagine its 4-years already!! Four years! It only feels like it was yesterday.

I remember everything like it was only yesterday, the days we used to have you with us. Especially the stories at dinner that would be filled with a certain sense of humor. I still remember how you used to pause a little or even give up the story once any of us interrupt you with a question. And the way you would just leave us in suspense until another day. It was not until when we learnt the secret, listening to the end of the story, and then maybe burst out into a heavy laughter later.Surprisingly, it could keep happening, even after we many times of missing out on killer stories.

I still remember how we used to wait on your home-coming every Friday evening, because we could only get to see you during weekends, I would not forget that we could just keep waiting, with all the hope that you would still come home. I mean we had no phones then, but we could still not lose hope that you would not turn up on every other weekend. And you would never disappoint.

I still remember the brief talks we always had before we left for school, each beginning of the academic term, and each of these times, you never really ceased to remind us “never to forget where we come from.” I still hold on to that, because if I forgot where I came from, then I would possibly not figure out where I am heading to either. I still remember those days when I prepared your favorite meals, and your smile before  you said “Thank you”said it all,..Yes, it was that rare. I learnt but a thing from you; to always say what I mean and mean what I say. I still hold on to this, and that you always stayed true to your word. Well, I do too…Thanks to you.

I still remember how you would watch Mum in awe during her regular “drama scenes”…(God I hope she never gets to read this article, in anyway…otherwise it would just turn out just like that little note I wrote during one of the nights I was supposed to be reading my books..But who tells a Primary kid to sit up until 10 pm reading books anyway???)  I still remember the faint smiles that could run  cross your face as you could watch her sway from one place to another, probably talking about something that we did wrong or something that we moved. We could all wonder what would be running through your mind, because you could seldom speak out. Sometimes she could be doing something as simple as supervising us “read”.

I still remember that Christmas day, that seemed so somber for us simply because we slept just a little longer than usual and she was up before any of us. And when you woke up after the drama had started, I still remember you wishing us a Merry Christmas, and Queen asking you if we could really have it “merry” with such morning moods home…As if you could even answer that! You just shook your head silently and moved (probably wondering what had got into Queen’s head this time).

I could write a book, if I was to bring out all the moments, but at this point, I will solicit some help. Sure, I am not the only one who remembers.

Well, I must say, it’s usually a little hard, getting home and the first thought is, I won’t see you; am sure I could share this with somebody else though. There are memories  of you just waiting in your room,and  the thought of not finding you home again still gives me disturbing moments, but grateful for the power to gradually brave through it. There is also that thought that when I bang whatever I get my hands on, that I am disturbing your afternoon nap…thank God the weight of this is fading with time though.

From the life God allowed us share with you, now I know, if I am to honestly ask myself  which people  in my life mean the most to me, I often find that it’s those who, instead of giving so much advice, solutions or cures or even big chunks of money, have chosen rather to share my pain and touch my wounds with a gentle and tender hand. The kind of friends who can be silent with me in a moment of despair or confusion,who can stay in both happy moments and hours of grief,who can face with me the realities of life…the friends who care without a benefit. Those that may not even promise to stay, but I am sure they will,and I count on them whenever. I must thank you for that lesson, because that’s how you did it.

I am sorry for all the times I was a pain but I hope  the good times outweighed the bad tenfold. And I hope you are resting peacefully from all the pain and hurt you were going through the last days I saw you.It was so hard, to see you through it all, yet I could not help a lot. Painful memories…but when I think of the pain you were going through in your last days, I want to think  that it was the best you needed. Just to let you know, in the course of time, when I miss you, I have learnt to let myself cry, cry it off until it feels like ‘better’, and then wipe my eyes and smile over the so many memories with you.

Cancer shows no concern at all for anyone… It’s only up to us to keep those lost to the disease alive in our thoughts and hearts. You were ready to go, the rest of us were simply not ready to let you. But as for now, we refuse to hold on to that, we shall celebrate a full life you lived.

You were without doubt, the absolute best.

May your soul rest in peace forever Dad.


Daughter, Norryn.



What do you stand for?

…Because, “If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.”- Malcom X

If you were to think about a time you took a stand and defended it from all corners, what could it have been? What did you do? I will save you telling the answer, keep it with you.
Now think of that other time that you didn’t take a stand yet you should have. What did you ignore then? Were there any consequences? What did you do about it?

Well, I didn’t mean to fire you with questions today,I didn’t see them coming either. It all started when I was having one of those evenings at my crib, you know? One of those I like to call my “me-time”. They usually teach me a thing or two about me. Many times I have been told by people I associate with that I am principled. At first I thought it was in a way to either an insult or a way to put me down, but later on I started identifying myself with this trait, and eventually, I like what I found out about me.

There are things that simply hold meaning to me and yet to so many other people, they just don’t. Usually, I may tell you a thing or two that I greatly value, that I hold on to like they make up an element of my life. And with these, trust me, I offer my best, and they yield results. Now, even though I wouldn’t blame somebody else for not having a similar opinion towards some things in life, because I mean, it’s not gospel truth that everyone has to. But because I realize that at some point it will help, I would want to challenge you, if you are reading this now….Do you stand for anything in your life? Or do you just fall for anything?

Well, it is also possible that you had never given this a thought and its okay, or maybe you have; but at least the few people I have asked about it seemed like they had never actually thought of it. But I will bring it to you this way;

Think about your life, think about the far you have come; think about where you are now; lets say, try to reflect on your life 10-15 years back and then think about where you see yourself in the next 10 – 15 years. Never mind, , I won’t need the answers after this, you will keep the thoughts with you. For all that time, do you think you have stood for something? So much that you started doing it even within your unconscious self and identified yourself with it so easily? So much that your circle of friends eventually knew about it and couldn’t doubt that it is a part of you? So much that even your family is aware of it?
Or are you the “two-sided-coin” kind of person in that even the closest people in your circles never manage to figure out what you are up to?

Well, if you can defy the odds, will you go through the same steps I went through that day; Think of that one virtue that you have stood for, one that you have not failed, or at least since we are not as perfect, one that you have tried your very best not to fail. If you got one, then by now, you must be in position to identify yourself with it. It must not be an activity, hobby or something you love doing most. It should be a character trait; a virtue,one that you have always considered  to be your strength. The kind of trait that you would literally ‘die’ for; that very attribute that even when circumstances don’t look so friendly, you would choose to go for. It could be Integrity, Service, Kindness, honesty, gratitude; there are many of those.

When you keep the practice of these virtues at the heart of your everyday life, you live with a purpose; You build a “character muscle”, you fill the missing parts of a puzzle in your life, it becomes more fulfilling.

It’s usually not easy that given our human nature, we have something of the sort. But then again, who said that we shall always go for the easy shot? After all, life will never been served on a silver platter. It’s all about what will affect our lives in the years to come. Before you decide on what exactly you chose to stand for, think of whether that same thing will matter in let’s say five or more years ahead of you. If it won’t matter, then it’s not worth even a try. If you think that what you will think, say or do about it  will affect your life, then I must say you got it! Because these are the only things that will speak “Life” into your life.

My old lady is very wise, she usually refers to this statement, as a matter of fact, she asked everyone at home to remember it even after she passes on. >>If you don’t know where you are going, any road is the correct one”<<. Don’t ask me if it was her own composition or she over heard it somewhere, but to me, it “holds water”.

TheStandStageSign edit