He left his family in 1979 to earn a living abroad. He never failed to send them letters and packages. But most of all, he never failed to be a father to his daughter and husband to his wife. When he comes home for a short break, he makes sure that everybody is happy. Some people tagged him as “Santa Claus”.
He wanted a son. He never gave up on this each time he comes home. He succeeded 10 years after his first child (daughter) was born.

He’s always been a good responsible head of the family. For 17 years of working abroad, he never failed to give the best that a father/husband could ever give his family. But life sometimes is unfair. After 17 years of service to a foreign land, he lost his job. He actually came on vacation and went back, but came home again just few weeks after when he left. Came home frustrated for he lost his job. He has a son on his 6th grade, a daughter who was on her 4th year in college, and a wife to support as what he had promised when they got married. But how when he is jobless. He had sold all his jewelries including his wife’s. Tried his level best to find another job but this time, he failed. On the other hand, he was lucky to have a daughter who had carried the load during those times. His daughter did all her best to support the needs of the whole family. She stopped from schooling and never gave up on them, for she knows that her father did all his best for them too and even sacrificed every single and important occasions in the family.

There was a time when he was ill. His daughter was earning 4K a month and had to pay all the expenses. No matter how the daughter encourages the father to see a doctor, the father would say no. He doesn’t want to be another burden financially speaking. But the daughter did not give up convincing him. She took her for a therapy. He got well, not so well but good enough to face the day again.

Until his daughter got the chance of putting up a small sari-sari store just for them to survive. She worked hard for them. For her father basically who she thinks was their “hero” for the past years. And for that, her father focused on the store. He would stay there 24/7 for he was afraid to miss a single Peso against a stick of cigarette or say a candy.

God is good. His daughter was blessed to work abroad. Life became a little lighter for them. But he never stopped working for them too. In spite of the monthly remittance that the daughter was sending, he wouldn’t depend on that.

His daughter finally had her first vacation. Spent her 30 days together with the family. A friend of hers was a Dakki (Cartoon Character Pillows) dealer. She visited home to sell at least a pillow or two. But the daughter refused, finding the prices too costly. That time her father was there watching them.

30 days got over. It’s time to go again. A day before the daughter left, she was packing her things in the living room when suddenly someone has thrown a pink Hello Kitty pillow to her suitcase. It was her father! He bought it, for her daughter! She was welled into tears. Speechless! Finally, her father said something “Nakita kita tinitingnan mo yung catalogue, sabi ng kaibigan mo, gusto mo daw yung Hello Kitty, kaya yan binili ko, yan man lang mapabaon ko sayo pagbalik mo dun”. Until now, recalling those moments makes my heart melts…. Yes, my heart melts….

For I am the daughter of the man who never gives up on life!

Mitch Carvalho

A full-time home-based Marketing Manager by day, 24/7 Mom, and a Blogger at any time. Iā€™m 43 and proud. Mom of Derelle & Erchelle, sharing my adventures as I walk through motherhood and having to do most things on my own while my Indian national husband works miles away from home.