My dad

My dad (Ayah) pass away unexpended on Tuesday morning June 17th, 2012. He should not have died, he just text my mom few hrs. earlier, talking about the Ramadan preparation, taking my sister to work and how he’ll promise to pick my mom up from the airport on August 5th. Everything went so fast that night it seems blurry to me. I remember getting the news around 10:30pm, family and frantically trying to get hold of anybody back home.. then finally hear the truth after talking to my crying sister. I remember the pain, so unbearable, it actually physically hurt. I remember how my mom keeps on fainted the whole night… he should not have died… there are many plans left….

Here I am writing this memorial for my dad’s memory book and it shouldn’t be that way.  My dad should not have died on Tuesday morning July 17th 2012. He was 65 years old and although he’s been complaining a minor chest pain lately, he’s fine. Then this, he died of a heart attack… leaving us here.

Losing my Father is one of the most difficult things I have gone through.  As I am writing this today, I realize how fortunate I was to have him as my Father.  There are not words to express his influence in my life. Ayah is (was) a great dad and a loving husband. He is also a wonderful grandfather. There are so many wonderful stories I could tell you, but there won’t be enough pages in this books… wonderful memories he left us with… and that memory keep him alive inside me, my mom, my sister and my two little girls, and among all people that loves him just as much. As Tyra often remind me, “grandpa will always be here with us” as he point to her chest.

I learned from him the value of education and hard work. One main lesson he gave me is that how as a woman, I should have skills, I should have a degree, a career, so I don’t depend on men and therefore no man will ever took me for granted and valued me. I am who I am today is because of my parents, because of my dad… he is no saint by any means, he’s human who made mistake and learned from them, but now I know he did the best he could with what he had. In many ways he succeeded better than most.

Family, relative and friends have said to me over and over again, how my dad was a great man, loving, kind and generous. Most of them remember how much he loves his family, how much he loves my mom and us his girls. He passionate about the world and history, he loves to play the piano or organ and sings, he loves to dance, him and my mom took samba, cha cha and salsa lesson together and enjoy it. Recently he enjoys cooking and I’m fortunate that I got to taste that! He is also very passionate about God, about Allah and never stop teaching me small little pray to get me through the day and difficult time…

He always reminds me to trust God with His plan. Remind me to achieve more and yet to stay humble, he assures me that all will be okay at the end. Now here I am, still filled with sadness, grief, and little anger. I need to remember his words, his advises, and most of us trust God that all will be okay.

There’s a saying in Indonesia rough translation is: “how a person live their life will be reflected when he die.” Hundreds have come and pay their respect, many cries with my family, some even wish is should’ve been them instead of him…  my sister told me that till this day we have not spend one cents on his funeral or memorial services. Everything has somehow been provided for us by relatives and family friends. From the cemetery plot, memorial service expenses, food expense…  all has been taking care of.. Everybody loves my dad. My Dad loved us, worked hard for many years for us, was liked by many people, and loved God.

 My dad passing was very quickly – just what he always wanted, no pain, no suffering – expect for the one he left behind. As if he knew his days were numbered, one of his last text messages to my mom was:

“Many people told me I’m unlucky for not having boys to carry my name. On the contrary, I am the luckiest father and man in the world, both our daughters grew up to be respectful daughters who took care of me and spoils me. When I was in Denver Sendie spoils me and her and Pheng never stops show me a good time. Now I’m back home, Acha did the same. Always make sure I have all I need, especially my favorite food. I’m sure both girls turn out well because of you, because of your upbringing. Thank you my love for raising our daughters’ right. I know you will be in their great hands.”

I love you daddy and I miss you so much….  Thank you for everything, for being the greatest dad a daughter can ask for, the greatest grandfather for my two little girls…  for all the wonderful memories you left us with… Until the day we meet again…

7 responses

  1. It is so hard and nothing makes it easier except time but good memories, laughter and tears help you through it. Obviously your dad believed his girls were there for him 100 percent…you would do him a diservice if you thought less by feeling guilty about what you could have, should of, done. i suspect your dad will stay present in your life always..“If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together.. there is something you must always remember. you are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. but the most important thing is, even if we’re apart.. i’ll always be with you.” Winnie the Pooh

    • Thank you Kb, I love the quote. In all honesty, its a very nice breeze after listening to plenty of religious quote. I feel a bit upset and betrayed right now by God. I’ll get over it…

  2. My condolences to you and your family. I can only imagine the pain you are going through right now. Your father left behind a wonderful legacy. He will be very missed.

  3. Awwww Sendi-Lou…I’m so sorry. I know getting news like that just rocks you off your feet. He sounds like a wonderful man. It’s doesn’t seem fair that he died so young. There was so much more he wanted to do. I don’t know you but I feel some of your pain and I’m really truly sorry. – Dawn.

  4. My dearest Sendie,
    I can feel your deep love for your Ayah in every word you had poured from your heart in this post. I have never met him and yet from these lines, I almost feel I know him…What a gentle, loving father he must have been for you. And how very proud he was of his two favourite girls. Do you know that to have known a father’s love is one of life’s greatest blessings? And you have it, deep in the foundations of your soul.
    I know how hard this time must be for you. There is not a day I do not think of my father back home in Malaysia while I am here in Finland. I see him once a year. It breaks my heart to be so far away from him. I am so sorry that your heart is going through a pain it has never known before. Take your time to grief. Sometimes, when we go through such a crisis, we do not allow ourselves the time and space to heal and feel the deep pain because of so many expectations around us, or we impose self-restrictions on ourselves and we try to move on before we are ready.
    The grief that you feel is a very real grief. It is valid. Look deep into the core of it. Don’t push it away or push it down. Explain to your young daughters that this sadness that they feel is a way that mommy is learning to deal with saying goodbye to grandpa. And we should never be afraid of sadness because it is just like happiness. It is an emotion and we are not afraid of it neither are we controlled by it. It is just a response that says, I need to be comforted. Deeply comforted at this time.
    Be kind to yourself. Be gentle to yourself. Just as your father would treat you if he was with you and seeing you crying and suffering. Just as you would comfort your children if you see them in pain. Give that to yourself.
    I thank you so much for coming over today. Please know that my thoughts are with you. And my prayers are with you.
    Hugging you tight my dear one…
    A friend,

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