SUNDAY 21 JUNE 2009, being the third Sunday of the month is recognized as that special day. Fathers all over the world have a day accorded to them, just like Mothers, Teachers, Arm Forces, Gawai and whatever that marked the calendar and celebrated or honored in their best traditions. Exceptionally this year Dato Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak the Prime Minister of Malaysia also decided not to let the day fly away without having has say regarding his own father and fathers generally. See 1 Malaysia.
A father, a grand- father or a great- grand- father in that order of hierarchy may all be alive on this special day. One is connected to his sons or daughters, while the other has his sons/daughters and his grand-sons/ grand- daughters while of course the patriarch has much stronger retinues to honor, respect and adore him. So Father's Day respectfully remember the man in the family. But how do we recognize them?
Those of us who have their fathers alongside them, either living together or a short distance or far away must be fortunate at the least while many may only have memories of them. Generally the father's role is never seen as more important as the mother's. Besides being the male gender you would not bake a special cake for him nor garland him with flowers. Father's strict, uncompromising attitude most time may not line him as the favorite. But he deserved that special honor for you being what you are now.
I would not be what I am if not for the persistence and uncompromising attitude of my father regarding schooling. He gave me education and focus for my later career. I inherited some if not most of his characteristics. Sadly he passed away when I was in my late teens. Yet all that I knew about him remained vivid as ours was a small family. But for those who stay away from their fathers due to mobility and circumstances of present day living, attempts must be made to know them: their whims and fancies, their friends or colleagues, their interests and dislikes, their early courtship with their devoted wives and many other intimate chapters if possible. Fathers at whatever stage would not like to see their off-springs go through period of difficulties. You must realize they would assist you where possible. Sometimes it may not come directly from him but through the gentle hands of his female partner. Just give a thought how he has funded you or lend a hand at settling some of your financial shortcomings. He has also become your guarantor to the point of putting himself in the noose if you fail to service your loans..Fathers gave you away at the marriage ceremony if you are a woman. Fathers planned your wedding, invited guests and joined in the happy occasion when you too take partners for life. He gave you shelter until you are ready to leave home and yet continue to provide so whenever you 'balikkampong' not alone with your breeds. He gave security very much earlier. Fathers keep early photos of you when you were young. That's their adoration. But do you keep photos of them when you are older? Fathers gave you 'pocket money' or tea money for your daily canteen food at the school. Do you likewise offer a return from your monthly salary? Fathers took you on visits and tours during the school holidays. Do you likewise shove a ticket for him to fly to some nearby destinations? Take the Raya do, do you come home with new pieces of shirts or completely new attire for him. More often than not you brought home a battalion of young soldiers to set the battle field asunder.
We view 'Father's Day' in a way known to us. The deeper you know about them, the more admirable and comfortable you would become. To him, his father and others I would offer 'AlFatihah' in memory of their past.