Like many immigrant kids, I’ve experienced many “smelly weird” school lunches packed by Pa.
But I loved them all and the one I looked forward to most was fried spam on a warm bed of rice.
I would inhale the luncheon meat, its greasy goodness soaked up by the rice.
This weekend is Pa’s death anniversary and I marvel at how quickly 15 years flew by.
Pa was calm, patient, even tempered – qualities I often lack during the eye of the storm of parenting a child with FASD! 😆
My memories of Pa are about the small things that feel bigger today: waking up first in the house to prepare our lunches, prioritizing our academics, role modelling healthy eating and living.
If it wasn’t for Pa who insisted our family immigrate to Canada so my sister and I could have a better life than in the Philippines, I would never have been T’s parent.
All these years later, I still recall weekend walks in our Philippines neighbourhood with Pa. I don’t remember specific sights – but I remember the warm feeling of walking side by side with Pa.
Life moves in full circles and with symmetry, guided by a force bigger than us.
During our bike ride this morning, T wanted to venture out to the main roads – which we’ve never done before as we’ve always kept to the safety of our neighbourhood streets.
Thinking about Pa, I took a leap of faith and said, let’s go beyond our boundaries – and gave T clear directions to stay on sidewalks and to stop at every corner, stop sign and light.
T wanted to bike to our local supermarket, which we usually drive to, and we were out for over an hour and biked over 10 km.
T did an amazing job and followed instructions.
I would like to think that years from now, he will remember the feeling of these bike rides too.
When we got home, I made the hubby and I fried spam and rice for lunch, while T had KD.
We then went to the first session of T’s fall swim lessons. Now in level 4, he has improved so much since starting lessons last Fall.
We then visited Pa, bringing him new flowers, as we do every death anniversary.
When we got home, the hubby and T baked gingerbread cookies, using baking mix T picked up during our Friday night grocery run.