Yes, you’re right – today’s post is in honour of fathers, or at least in honour of my father. My father is a physician with a fairly good practice in Ghaziabad, a city not very far from Delhi. For those of you who know my father, you already know that he is not a man who can be easily placed in any particular category. He is different things to different people, and a different person in different settings. In the strictest sense of the word, he can’t be called a preacher. Even in my life, he restricted his preaching to around 2 years – to what people call the difficult formative years. And boy, did he make my life hell those years! Actually, I should include my elder sister as well, since her experiences couldn’t have been much different. Fortunately, for both of us those 2 years didn’t damage our relationship with our father and in hindsight we are thankful for all his preaching because we got to go to some of the best colleges in the country because of it.
But my blog today is not really on what my father preached about, rather its on the things he didn’t preach about. Its about the things he taught us by the way he lived his life, which has been the biggest and best lesson by far.
Let me tell you what I mean – for the last 30 some years (the first 4 years of my life are kind of vague), I have seen my father get up every day and go to work with the same enthusiasm, passion and integrity as the day before that and the day before that and so on – as he probably did the first day he went to work (I can’t say, I didn’t exist!). His commitment and compassion for his patients is inspiring and has remained steady over the years (so much so that at least I for one have envied them sometimes). Through his life he showed us that if you love what you do, it doesn’t feel like work at all and that all your dreams deserve that they be pursued. Above all, in spite of all the hard work, he took the time to travel, to spend time with friends and family and to generally live it up.
All of which brings me to today, here, right where I am – One Knit at a Time. This was a dream, a passion project, which I have had the courage to pursue, because it was shown to me by example that I could and I should pursue it. I could do this because my father always says – Ask for what you want, the worst that can happen is that the person you ask will say no. So I dared to ask and started writing about what I love. And to my great amazement none of you said no. I now feel that if I can bring even half the commitment and integrity to this venture that my father brings to his work, I can consider myself successful.
So young lads and lasses, let your Papas preach – listen to their preaching but also pay attention to what they are not preaching. Often the biggest lessons come from the things they don’t say.
Also, on the occasion of Father’s Day, why not a small knitted gift for your father? I knitted mine a bow tie and he was obliging enough to wear it for a photograph.
Now if I could just get him to wear it to a party.
P.S. My mum is pretty special too and I’ll talk about her on a day honouring Mothers. However, today it is only about my old man!