Thought I Saw You the Other Day

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The things my dad taught me were many. Things I saw, things I felt, things I heard, things I experienced outside of my senses. Things tangible, things abstract, things wonderful in their obviousness, things harder to tell apart than me and my twin brother. Things that stuck to me so hard they hurt, things that slipped through my desperately reaching fingers like memories from a dream. Things outside of my mother’s ability to explain, thing well outside of any school’s ability to teach. Things that are universal in their application, things that can’t be explained in an essay. Some things of which I will try to relive here.

Identity. Since I was a nameless embryo competing for conception in my shared womb to when I was a teenager competing for square footage in my shared room, I was constantly mistaken for my competitor. During the early instances of people’s confusion, I vehemently opposed and corrected their mistakes, not wanting to be my brother’s shadow, or him mine. But eventually the unrelenting flow of ignorance led to my penultimate belief that I would be nothing more than a doppelganger, without individual ideas or values. To my dad, however, I was the half of an undivided attention that carefully separated his nephew’s personalities like a man panning for gold. He helped me believe that I could forge my respective path in life, and never forgot that my nose is slightly higher than my brother’s. He made me see that my brother does not define who I am, and that my successes and failures are my own.

Survival of the fittest. After a mal shark mates, he leaves the mother with her children and continues with his own life. Then the mother, fed up with her high-maintenance and hot-tempered kids and unable to cope alone, gives up on them and searches for a new companion. Unmanaged and unchecked, the identical offspring become the most terrifying members of their neighborhood. In the process, however, the weak ones, unable to adapt to their situation, are overwhelmed and rooted out of their society. The strong ones, finding the independence suited to their tastes, relish the challenge and excel in their isolated environment. I felt that all of the children were different parts of me. The things consumed in grief and bitter lassitude – in other words, weakness – I had to learn to disassociate and sever, sometimes painfully. Other things, some of which were not part of me and I had to acquire, rose up and helped me to simply survive. He probably didn’t know it, but my dad’s action helped mold me into who I am today – the king of the fish in the sea.

There were many things my dad taught me. He taught me love. He taught me hate. He taught me success. He taught me mistakes. He taught me to see the ripples of a word. He taught me to see the waves of an action. He taught me to learn from him while he was with me. He taught me to miss him while he was away. Taught me so well, that I thought I saw him the other day. But the thing is, my dad passed away last year. And that was probably the greatest thing he ever taught me.





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