When evening comes, I wish you are there to lead the family’s joy-enriched dinner circle. When dawn comes, I wish you are there, with your smiling face, to wake me up with a ladle of freezing water. I wish you to be with me everywhere. No mortal sons will ever miss their fathers like I do for you. If it was not for the orders of the Lord, I would not have let you go away for a second. He ordered and you left; without a memoir of goodbye.
|The only surviving photo of my late father|
When you left the world, I was so young to understand your going. When people around sobbed, I expected you to come home bringing biscuits for me. I never realized that you were going for ever and I would no longer see you in this world. Since you died, I walked bare-footed. I drank porridge and fed on leftovers like a homeless dog. I had no pencils and papers in schools. My mother was tagged widow and the society down-looked on our family. Our home became a mere house that sheltered shunned-breathing souls. The once faithful disciples, who used to bend before you, turned away from us. People who made you their Lama yelled death on our face trying to uproot your family tree. Your death was a coincidental teacher to my walk. I learned so much from what your death has to offer me.
I walked forth barefoot yet fearlessly; not denying the fact of being poor and down-trodden. I had no power, no wealth and no relatives. And discovering that my liberating tool is no other than education, I studied studiously. I topped many classes; Class PP- 1st, Class I- 2nd , Class II- 1st, Class III- 2nd, Class IV- 1st, Class V- 2nd, Class VI- 2nd, Class VII- 1st, and whole section first in class IX, defeating more than 280 students dispersed into seven sections in Tashitse MSS. Except for the board exams, I made it to the top most ranks. In India, during my graduations too, I topped Journalism classes and begged several prizes which helped me buy text books and references for my higher studies. Scoring 95% in industrial psychology, I over-threw the Acharya’s record of highest marks obtained in the said subject. So, you have reasons to be proud, My Father.
I strongly believe that the birth conditions do not determine what you are going to be in future. I was born amid stools but grew up clean, just like flower from the dirty mud and to the altar, to serve in various capacities. My leadership bagan in class II when I became a prayer captain in Dungmanma Com Pry School. In Minjiwoong LSS, I served as a Taktser Meto House Captain and a School Captain in Tashitse MSS. Later in Class XI and XII, in Jigme Sherabling HSS, Khaling, I served as a Sengye House Captain. When I was in India, I founded Bhutanese Students Association of Acharya Institutes (BSAAI) and helped many to the best of my ability. You have reasons to be proud, My Father.
People say that hard work is a key to success. When hard-work is repaid with money, it is, I believe called, profit. But when it comes with values, it is more so valuable. One of the many things I value and would value in my entire life is the award of the BEST STUDENT. I received this award for two times; one in class VIII and the other in Class X. I have achieved a lot as a son and a human being. You have reasons to be proud, My Father.
No women are strong as my mother. After your death, she suffered bitter agony. She worked day and night and fed us with little food she got at the end of her tiresome day. She fell down many times. Yet she did not break into pieces but reconciled herself into an immobile, unbreakable bunch of sticks and pushed me up into the societal rungs with her broken hands. I could have reached nowhere without her. You have left me her, a strong woman in my life! You have reasons to be proud, My Father.
Of the 48 students who enrolled in class PP in the year 1995, I am the only one who have reached the top most level of education, pursuing Post Graduate Diploma in Public Administration in the Royal Institute of Management. I am the first person from our village to set my footsteps here in the RIM, the nation’s premier institute. All have fallen on the way; some became farmers, some house wives, Gomchens, army, police, drivers etc. I held my hopes and drag forth my will to fulfill the wishes you envisioned. I made my mother and brothers proud. You too have reasons to be proud, My Father.
You were so gentle, my father. I remember accompanying you in my young days. What I try to harvest today is a little from your magnanimous vast actions. Just like you served your people, I would like to serve them with what I have learned for about two decades. My life-long wish is this. I see you on every face I meet. You have reborn young but I wish you were the same old father who would take my hand and show me the world you saw. I missed your guidance. Though half of my life is already gone, I live here with a big dream; a dream to make my place the place of love. Your son will work hard on his dreams. And you have reasons to be proud, My Father.
I've fought my path forward to be the only one to get the highest education from the generations of our family. I've set my footsteps (First from Dungmanma village) to the Royal Institute of Management, the premier management college in Bhutan. With this I have flung the door of opportunity wide-open for the future comers. You have reasons to be proud, My Father.
I have grown up to a life I love, met goals I desired and reached places I had longed for. I shall prove to be a human of value. And I shall strive to make you feel proud through the times to come. I love you, Apa.