Article by Emina Sotto / Graphic by Kathleen Yap
Growing up, my father never ran out of wisdom to share with me and my siblings.
Whether it was as simple as tips on how to play bowling or how to drive in the busy streets of Manila, or as serious as college degrees and career choices, my father was always ready to give us his best advice.
As the saying goes, “actions speak louder than words,” and even in the times that my Dad did not verbally impart wisdom to us – he was someone I looked up to and respected because of simply who he was.
5 Life Lessons I Learned Growing Up
5. Success is earned through blood, sweat, and tears.
Coming from humble beginnings, my father worked his way through his college education and law school. He made a name for himself in his career and gained the respect of many. But behind every success, there are hardships and struggles. One thing I learned from my father’s success story is his determination, dedication, and interminable drive to succeed. There are truly no limits when you strive hard in life – no matter where you come from.
4. Always take the high road, no matter what.
Being a man of integrity, my father strongly believes in always choosing to do what is right and staying true to your word. Although at times, it’s tempting to take the easy way out of things even if it’s not the right thing to do, one thing I’ve learned from my father is that you must always take the high road no matter how difficult it may be.
3. Stay humble.
Despite my Dad’s successes, he remained grounded and rooted in who he was. Even in a position of power, he treated everyone around him with the same respect. Furthermore, my father never enjoyed the limelight. He was a humble man that believed that true happiness is found in mere simplicity.
2. Form bonds that last a lifetime.
My father was never ever short of deep and meaningful relationships, always surrounding himself with good people in his life. Always hosting get-togethers and reunions, my father made certain that everyone always had a great time. For him, good friends are forever.
1. Love unconditionally.
My father was always the type of person that never asked for anything in return and always gave willingly to others. His utmost generosity always bear in mind what is best for others, giving them exactly what they need. His heart overflows with love for the people around him – his friends, his siblings, his family, his grandchildren, his son, his two daughters, but most especially – his wife. The way my father loves my mother is beyond anything I’ve ever seen in the world. It is the kind of love that transcends any hardship, any struggle, any disease. It is a love that is better than any fairytale – it is a love that is real.
So thank you, Dad. You are my greatest inspiration. I wouldn’t be who I am today if it weren’t for you. If there’s one thing I’m most thankful for, it’s having you as a father. I love you!