Prison officer talks to his child
FATHER TO HIS CHILD: A reminder
My child, let me be clear about our respective situation. Next week, you will be celebrating your 21st birthday and I tell you, it is a milestone and you made it. I remember that time when I reached that age; I was a picture of freedom and hope. Like you, I would be able to cast my own shadows and from there I could create my own self, carving it as it were, from the lessons I learned from my parents.
Remember that for the last 21 years, it was a devotion on the part of your parents, our strength were still in its prime and we were always there for you, if not physically, its emotionally. Now, 21 years is about to end, another 21 years is about to begin. For us, it would be downward until dementia, but for you, it would be conducted with vigor.
I intend to be unorthodox which would greatly boost your momentum to succeed. Unlike before when, during my time, after reaching the age of 21, I felt beholden to my parents to work doubly hard for a return of their investment, always within their reach during crunch time, always around when the goings get tough, now I tell you what, it would never be that way. I will never expect you for succor. Neither will I be waiting at the crossroads for your assistance. I do not even intend to pray for your attention for I know fairly well that life at this time demands so much from its creatures. I am on my own and with the little savings I have conserved; it would accompany me until my twilight years. In your case, you have the world as your oyster, the environment as your playground, your power as your reference and you have all the resources within the planet to use and spare. Don’t worry about me. Don’t even think that we are that strapped that you will be compelled to force yourself for us. Be kind to yourself, better, enjoy yourself. Let me assure you that we, your parents, or I, your father, is safe and quite bubbly wherever we, or I , would chose to be.
I will however be around watching you occasionally while you are performing your tasks. We will be there for the applause and of course, to appreciate your command performance. We know that life has its ups and downs, we had it also. There were blunders and difficulties. Ours were terrible if not terrifying and I pray that you would not encounter the same. One thing though, such challenges made me strong. Those were part of the show of reality however. We encountered it by the dozen and in its barest and rawest form at that. And looking back, we were able to weather everything and this is while we have you, our children to take care of and parents to support.
I don’t’ know how you would view my approach. You can now remove or at least delete us from among those in the list of your concern. Don’t burden yourself with the thought that we are a constant reminder of help and relief. Take us out from the list, even from the equation of aid. No, don’t get the impression that we are severing our ties already. We are still, of course, related in the highest degree. My point is this. Don’t subscribe to the belief that we are there on the sidelines awaiting for some returns. We know that you are in the thick of your game and we know, as we knew it also before, that life is about winning convincingly. We tried our best to equip you with all tools necessary for you to overcome every difficulty. That was the period, the 21 years that we have goaded you to persevere. We wanted to extend it but after 21 years, your strength has already been consolidated and in our case, our strength begins to recede already. It would be pure hypocrisy to claim otherwise. We are on the way out already. It is you who is on prime time now.
The beauty of life is dependent on the challenge. The more problem it offers, the better for you. Well, for me it gave me the options. It is never static. At times it evolves, at times, it revolves. We are constantly faced with alternatives. We pick our very own preferences. We either select that which we will make us strong or that which will make us weak. It is your choice now. The problem however is that a situation is certainly different from your favorite capsule where you could review its literature. It has no package at all. We are left with our own devise to take or drop it. We had our time before and I tell you, it’s really exciting. Sometimes, we have to be emotional in our choices. But these, per lesson learned, would eventually make us sad. I was very happy at the onset but a bit remorseful afterwards. Emotions should never be a part of decision making after all. You better take note.
Happiness lies on how you execute your judgment. It is never a situation where luck, chance or whatever it is, becomes a basis for your effort. Otherwise, I would have entered the seminary and prayed for the rest of the world instead. Worst, you may not even see the light of day because if I became a man of the cloth, I would be celibate. I chose to take the world, by the horn. Do it also for your own sake. It is rewarding and well, at times, punishing if not frustrating. But the process I tell you makes you the person you want to be.
In time, you would be able to formulate your own, your very own philosophy, or whatever. You may do a father like me or perhaps the one tried by your grandfather. As I say, whatever. My point is only this. Strive in a world of your choice. But do not mind us anymore. We are already partaking of the world we have created in our prime. You are now about to live in the world you are to create. Take good care of yourself. Your success is for your own sake. On hindsight, it would, for us, be a shining medal or trophy of sort. But everything now is for you and you alone, to consider.