The sun’s strong heat strikes the muddy yet beautiful face of the woman who is bringing home camote and cassava from the farm. She will cook these to feed the starving stomach of her children who are still working in the farm. Their life revolves around the farm as this is their main source of living. This land is inherited by his husband from his great grandparents. Sweat kept falling from her cheeks and as she walked fast, she felt the numbness of her feet. Her face shows that she is already very tired.
As she arrived home, she hastily cooked the root crops that she brought. Once cooked, she hastily called all her children. As they were dining, a sot man arrived, shouting malicious and propane words but it’s not anymore new to them.
“Pa, let’s eat now”, said Lizzy.
“Who cares! You eat if you want to eat, don’t bother me. I just want wine, wine, wine!” replied Father.
“Randolp, don’t talk like that to our daughter. She is just concerned about your health. Early in the morning, you are already drunk. Please have pity on us. Help us. How can you give a bright future to our children if you are always like that?” said Mother.
“You shut up or I will break your face into pieces!” replied Father.
“Ma, don’t talk anymore. We will just leave Papa alone,” said Greg with a trembling voice and with tears in his eyes.
“Ma, when will Papa become responsible? If he will only work hard for our family and stop drinking, we could have a better life, we could have eaten enough good foods.” Mertylle said.
“We will just pray that one day, we could have a better life, a life where we can eat nutritious and yummy foods. That’s why, don’t lose hope. You always study hard. You make your Papa an inspiration.” Mother told the children.
The words of their mother were imprinted in the heads of the children most especially to Lily. Every day, their father got drunk. But there is nothing new to it. She would just always remember what their mother told them.
For some people, their father was useless but for them their father is very important. They really considered their father as the pillar of their family even though if he’s like that. They respect their father very much.
Unknown to some, their father was also respected and bowed by some people because they believed in the power or what they call as black magic that their father possessed. They also believe that they should not make their father hate them or else they will be cursed and suffer for the rest of their lives. Their father can disappear anytime he wants not to be seen by anyone and their father was also believed to have the power to heal the sick. And they witnessed it many times. When the people who believe in him got sick, they will go to him. Then, their father will put his right hand on the forehead of the sick ones, whisper some words and spit them with his own saliva. Hours after, the sick got healed. For some it’s unbelievable, but for some it’s incredibly believable. One time, there was a young man whom they believed to be possessed by some make-believe creatures. This man murmured words which they believed to be the language of the creature that possessed him. He opened his eyes wide open which were very scary to look at. He laughed in an extremely hilarious, frightening manner that no one dared to go near him. Then, Lily’s father came. He put his right hand in the forehead of the young man, talked to him using a different language, stared at him for quite a long time. Unbelievably, the young man slowly stood up, fixed himself and asked, “What happened to me? Why are there many people around me? Have I done something wrong?” With so much happiness, the parents thanked Lily’s father for bringing their son into his normal life again. Days after he was back into his normal life, the young man told everyone that a dwarf brought him into their kingdom and asked him to eat their jumping rice. The dwarf was even asking him to marry his daughter, be the kingdom’s prince and take charge of the kingdom’s properties but he declined because the kingdom feels odd and blood-curdling.
Every Holy Week, you could see Lily’s father doing odd things. He would go to a very quiet place to do his rituals. He would make oil out from coconut fruit, pray using strange language, and wear a long red scarf and read his very old, formidable looking book. This is what they believe where the power of Lulu’s father came from.
Some people respect Lily’s father because of his incredible ability but for Lily, she respects her father because he is her father. She doesn’t have any hatred against his father but rather genuine love and care.
Lily really wanted to finish her studies because she wanted to help her family. She studied hard though sometimes her stomach is empty. At school, during recess time, she would drink plenty of water and read books or pretend to sleep so that she will not envy her classmates who have plenty of foods. As time went by, she got used to it.
Lily’s hard work was paid off as she graduated elementary as the class valedictorian. Not only that, she also got a scholarship for her high school. During her high school days, life was bit difficult for her as she was living far from her family. She sold sweet custards to support her daily needs and school projects. The best buddy where he held on to during the hardest days of her life was God, and the best thing that he never let go of was her determination to succeed in life.
Her hard work was paid off again as she graduated from high school as the class valedictorian. She again got a scholarship for her college years.
During her college days, she worked as a tutor for some grade school pupils. Still, life for her was not easy. But still she kept her eyes focused on her goal.
Indeed, she’s able to graduate from college with flying colors, landed on her dream job, built a happy family and got a life better than the life that she used to have. In one way or another, she’s able to help her parents financially and hold parties/gatherings to unite her family.
And all her brothers and sisters also became responsible and successful in their own endeavour.
And when their father passed away, it was then that they realized that indeed they’re fortunate enough to have a father like him because he may not be the ideal father, he may not be their role model but he served as their inspiration. He morphed them into who they are today; responsible and great providers not just to their family but also to the people who need them.
Now, they consider their father as an angel in disguise.