I vividly remember the happiness I felt on that sultry summer day, when you finally bought me a strawberry ice-cream after I had been nagging for it for hours. Or the rebellion we shared, when I was sitting at the back seat of our car, then you opened the side window while casting me a cheeky glance, and turned the music loud for all to hear. Sometimes, you would put me on the saddle of your lap and shake me up and down on your knee. For a while, you would find peace with yourself, simply by looking at me through your own encouraging eyes. A mere glimpse of your sincere attention, and I truly believed that I was a famous jockey on the way to victory, biting my tongue amidst the deafening cheers of an imaginary crowd on the stands surrounding the racetrack. I disarmed you with my giggles of innocent excitement. At the age of a child, we are still young and unafraid, and our laughs are uninhibited and contagious. In those rare but precious moments with you, I inhaled the confidence that only a dad can give, for no form of love is more pure, reliable and unconditional than that of a parent for his child. Unnoticeably, you became the standard I set for myself, when I seek to love and be loved in return. I miss the umbilical cord we never really had, but felt we had. We silently promised each other to never cut it loose. You guided me without uttering all too many words, by simply being who you were, and by accepting me for who I truly was.
Nobody is perfect. We were each other’s mirror. I would forgive you all, if only I could see you one more time. In fact, I had forgiven you all long time ago already, once my understanding of life in general ripened as the season changed from spring to summer in my own. I just regret that I never used the chance to tell you. There’s no day I don’t think of you, wondering where you’d be now. I look up at the clouds; they cast their shadows over me. In their stubborn silence, they refuse to give me any clue. Are you watching me, or at least watching over me? You gave me the sense of freedom and the belief that everything was possible, and took it away from me when you passed away and left me behind. Yet now I am afraid to find it back, as if I doubt my ability to make it on my own. I want a new you. You had the gift to inspire me, the power to guide me without using reins, to give me confidence and understanding for the choices I made, even though some must have caused you sleepless nights without me even knowing it. But you lived life yourself so you knew how it often has other plans in store for us than what we expect it to bring. Sometimes only when we find it, do we finally know what we have been searching for. You must have known this long time ago already, maybe even before I was riding horse on your lap.