An open letter to my first teacher
MANILA, Philippines – I remember looking up to you like the superheroes, G.I. Joes and Power Rangers that I watch on TV.
You were always there to protect me and take me to places where I can explore and run free. You were my greatest critic, but also my greatest teacher.
You introduced me to my favorite music: playing songs on the turntable, listening to your favorite radio station on our way to school, and asking me to burn CDs of timeless classics. We explored different places with your photos and you even let me take snapshots myself. You tutored me in math, watched my plays, and let me practice my declamations in front of you.
You reminded me to brush my teeth, comb my hair, and eat my breakfast.
There were plenty of times when I was afraid that if I didn’t follow your rules, if I didn’t finish my food, or even just tried to sneak up the cupboard to get my favorite salty peanuts, you would get mad at me.
I was always the stubborn one, but then you were stubborn too. You wouldn’t budge even when I cried my way out of things like sitting out a basketball championship because I was scared, or stopping a swimming lesson because I didn’t think I was good enough.
You taught me how to drive. You patiently told me what to do when the engine died on me because I didn’t step on the gas enough before letting go of the clutch. You trusted me to get behind that wheel and try again.
I was so distracted by the fear of you getting mad that I forgot to see that you were always there to witness my wins and mistakes: in every game, every competition, and every milestone in my life.
You pushed me out of my boundaries and taught me things that every father should teach their children. You taught me how to hold my head up high and to never give up, not for a single moment.
Now it’s my turn.
I’ve mastered the art of taking photos on a touch screen cellphone, attaching photos and documents on my email, and making video calls to relatives millions of miles away. It’s my turn to teach you things, drive for you, and take you to places where you can explore. It’s my turn to become your teacher and bring you closer to the technology that can make our connection even stronger. And don’t worry, if I don't know the answer to your questions, we can Google it together.
I will help you send that message on your smartphone, put all the songs you love on your MP3 player and plug it in the stereo, and organize your movies, photos, and music on your laptop.
I now have my own family. I have responsibilities to face and new challenges to overcome. Now, I’m the hero and the teacher that my own kids look up to. But you will always be my first teacher: the one who taught me how to survive on my own, to wait in line patiently for whatever purpose, and to never let anything or anyone tell me that I can’t.
I hope that this letter will let you know of how proud I am to have learned only from the greatest dad of them all.
I only wish that I could be as good as a teacher as you. – Rappler.com
Now it’s your turn to tell us your story. What are your unforgettable teaching moments with your dad? Share it with us in the comments section below.