Some of us grow up believing that our parents have all the answers to the questions of the universe. It seemed amazing every little thing they did — from making sure our favorite cereal was in the pantry, to building the swing-set in the backyard.
My parents, most especially, always made sure that we had food on our table. My father, in particular, juggled two jobs during the day and helped us with our Math homework at night. It was a simple and humble existence, but we were happy. We couldn’t afford anything excessive, but we had enough for a family of six in the Philippines.
For as long as I can remember, it was music that gave life to our little home. It held a significant role in my upbringing that I have always associated a song with a particular memory.
The Dilemma: Being overtaken by fear
Sundays used to be my favorite thing growing up. Sundays meant my father plugged his karaoke machine and sang until supper. It was an unspoken rule. For the rest of the week, the karaoke machine should be left untouched. But come Sundays, the whole house wakes up to Elton John.
Some Sundays, he used to hand me the microphone. But for some reason, I could never sing in front of anyone.
I was a shy and nervous kid who shrunk from everybody’s graze. I cowered behind my mother’s skirt or hid under tables during big family gatherings because that meant plugging the karaoke machine on.
But he never forced me instead, he was certain that I would be comfortable eventually.
Unfortunately, Sundays stopped being Sundays when my father lost his father. I was twelve when I woke up to my mother crying beside me. I was confused. I told her it was Sunday. Nothing bad ever happens on a Sunday.
But it happened almost immediately. In the following weeks after that, even on Sundays, the karaoke machine was left untouched.