Papa, enough please.

I want to live my life by my own example. I want to live for myself and not for anyone else’s sake, to grace every moment of my life with my own identity and uniqueness. I want to continue to believe in what I’ve got; to stay as I am and not change for anyone.

I really admire the influence my father has instilled in me. I admire him for his fidelity and compassion for my mother. I admire him for his sacrifices in providing us with all our needs. I admire him for surpassing the difficult challenges he experienced. I admire him for his intellect. His thoughts and ideals have molded me. Lastly, I admire him for being an instrument of God, for making me realize who I really am and what I’m supposed to be.

I witnessed how my father pressured my older brother while he was studying. My father was there to guide and direct him from his elementary, high school until his college years. But as days passed by, I noticed how my father was becoming too strict. My brother is a real genius: a regional champion in academic competitions, a national delegate in some conferences, and a Math wizard. However, these achievements are not enough for my father. I often hear him talking to my brother, how he should do his best and never allow himself to be at the bottom. I understand that my father did that because he simply wanted my brother to succeed in life.

As days passed by, the same story happened to me. I was a winner in some writing competitions. I was the editor-in-chief of our school paper, a delegate in some conferences, a winner in quiz shows, a student leader in college and an achiever in our school–but again these are not enough to impress my father. Now, I partly understand my father, but when will he stop pressuring us?

Now that I’m eighteen, I somehow realized how to live my life by my own ideals, making my own identity and doing what I want. I want to live my life without others dictating what to do and what not to do. I am already growing up. I already know what is right and what is wrong for me.

I truly believe that my father is an experienced man who has suffered from his past, and that gives him the authority to lead us. I admire him for that. But I also want enjoy life while I’m still young and strong. I want to stress though that enjoying life does not mean engaging in worldly acts of the youth today, like engaging in premarital and homosexual sex, use of drugs and alcohol abuse. What I meant by living my life is having my own preferences and prerogatives.

I want to live by my own example. I highly respect my elders for their past experiences. I’ve learned from what they have experienced but now I want to make my own example. This doesn’t mean disregarding the elders’ teachings. This means learning to live my life by my own decisions and assumptions.

I want to live my life for myself and not for someone else’s sake. I am doing things the best as I can because I want to succeed. I want to have my own identity and to leave a legacy when I die. I can’t meet these goals if I don’t do what my heart and mind dictate.

Another thing I realized now is that my father loves comparing us to other people. I am a unique person, created by God with different skills and talents. I can do things others can’t do. I do things my own way. I am totally different from my siblings, my friends, my cousins and other relatives.

Last, I can’t change for someone else. Sorry but changing for others is a disgrace on my part. I truly admire Arts Instructor Katherine Watson in the movie Mona Lisa Smile for she refused to change her personality, her beliefs and ideals. Like her, I am a person with strong and firm convictions that no one can challenge. Who cares if I don’t get the highest position or if I am not in power? Huh, to change myself for others, that is a no-no for me!

I would like to clear that I am not against my father. He is a well experienced man and he knows what’s best for us. He molded us well. My brother is still a genius and I can say that I am an achiever on my own. My younger brother just graduated valedictorian last school year. My other two siblings are doing well in their secondary years.

I just want to tell my father that I can’t always live my life following his teachings and orders. I also want to live my life with own options and ideals. But hey old man, I’ll never forget your words that have made us better persons.

I just wish Papa wouldn’t scold me for revealing his life to the public. (Hehe, I’m crossing my fingers.)

Melford, 18, is a Mass Communication student. Writing has always been his passion. He loves socializing with people of different lifestyles. He is adventurous, and loves breaking the rules for possible “great chances” in life. He wants to be the President of the Philippines.

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