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Monday, June 18, 2012

A Pear from a Mango Tree

I had a professor in college who gave an unsolicited advice to the ladies in our class. She said, "Ladies, be careful in choosing who you end up with. Do not marry a guy who came from a broken family." 

We had different reactions: a few just shrugged off the suggestion, a couple of classmates raised their brows, and some felt it was unfair for our prof to judge people by what their parents did or did not do. But there's this one guy in our class who was actually hurt by that comment. He was offended by the generalization; angry that he's been judged at how he will fare as a father when in fact he has made a promise to himself that he will be a great father, if not the best, in the future.

There is an old Filipino idiom, 'Kung ano ang puno, sya ang bunga' that roughly translates, 'whatever the tree, so is the fruit' . I think it's crap! Whilst it is true a mango tree cannot yield a pear, fruits from the same tree can either be sweet or sour. The same goes for sons from a broken home who can turn out exactly like their father and/or mother or the world's greatest dad.

A good example is my dad who made sure he turns out to be the exact opposite of his father. My Lolo, an attractive man who owned vast lands in the North, had more than 3 dozen children from different women. My dad would often recall how he and all his other siblings (legitimate or otherwise) would all gather for Christmas under one roof, some of them he met only once or twice. My grandfather surely have supported each one financially, but money could never erase the stigma of being an illegitimate child especially during the early days.

Anyway, fast forward to today, my classmate is now happily married to a loving, beautiful, and intelligent woman (*wink) and has three children. And true to his word, he has been successful in keeping his vow to be a good father someday. He showers his children with love and affection and provides for them well materially - something he never experienced from his father. It's quite amazing how he is able to the job when he didn't have anyone to look up to, no father figure to take after.

Actually, the credit should go to his mom who wore the hat of both a father and a mother, who worked hard to ensure he gets a bright future and who loves him unconditionally. Ironic as it seems, he learned to be a good father through his mother.

He is the sweet fruit from that sour fruit-bearing tree. I am sure if our old professor could see him now, she's going to eat her words. Hell, she can also eat her (very very long) hair.

Happy Father's Day to my former classmate and Daddy of my children. Congratulations for a job well done. Keep it up.

We love you heaps!


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