Lived like a King

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My father grew up in Malacca, Malaysia as the third of four children. They lived in a one room bungalow even though his father was the post master in the town, a relatively good job. My father said several times that he still remembers the sounds of scorpion claws on the pressed earth floor and, his mother killing them. In comparison to many others, they lived in relative comfort. I know nothing of actually living this kind of life and unfortunately, eighty years later, still far too many do.

My father moved to Australia in the mid-60s on the sweat of his art and life changed markedly for him. If people from his old village could have seen the opulence he lived in, wow would they be jealous. Of course, wealth and luxury is relative isn't it? I am from a family at the poorer end of the scale but luckily for the children, one with parents who cared enough to equip us with some basic skills to survive the world. Dealing with disappointment was at the core.

I have often thought about how I view people and wonder how much effect this pathway to me affects my world view. For example, when I get into a taxi with a foreign driver or, speak with a cleaner who has come from one third-world country or another, they remind me of my dad. My father was a high school teacher, a very good one but,I know that no matter what he did, there would always be those who looked down upon him, as if his presence dirties their home. I think he felt it too and made up for it by always being fastidious about his manners, looks, cleanliness and above all, the way he treated people. Perhaps I am projecting but, I don't think so.

It is an interesting lesson in perspectives when considering what is a good or a bad job. What people in some places don't realise is that there are those who will risk their lives, leave loved ones behind and work extremely hard to create a better life and wind up emptying bins. People understand the risks but, they might not recognise that emptying bins is a better life for many people. It is a job, it provides a steady income, it is relatively safe and, it is a position that can provide a level of comfort one may never have known prior, depending on experience.

While some wouldn't think of lowering themselves down to such levels, others work to attain that kind of position, one that affords them possibility. I think this is also why so many foreign background children end up doing relatively well in their lives. Their parents work hard at often poorly paid positions to provide a space so the children have opportunities they didn't. Access to education or tutors or, perhaps some books. In my house, books were about the only thing we had plenty of laying about.

The children see the obvious struggle and sacrifice their parents make for them and either look to repay them by doing well or, take the path of, my life will be different. Of course, this isn't only the position of foreign children but it does tend to be relatively common.

I wonder what my grandad thought when all of his children left for other countries (Canada, England and two in Australia)? Was he disappointed or, was he grateful for being able to do his job as a parent to help them create a better life for themselves? In their new found home countries, they had access to much more opportunity than was available to them previously.

I can very well imagine that it would be terribly difficult for a parent during those times to wave goodbye to their children with all likelihood they will never be seen again. No internet, skype, calls extremely expensive and even letters would take months.

I haven't spoken to my dad in many months. I just can't. He has dementia and the chances of me getting him at a time where he can recognise who I am is slim to none. I hope that when he is lucid, he understands it is like being back in those days with him and his own father, a world apart with very little opportunity to communicate. I wish I had spent more time speaking with him when I could but, I am okay with the time we had.

It is natural for a parent to want better for their children and, it is natural for children to want to be better. I hope that I am one day able to provide the space for my daughter to learn what she needs so she can far outgrow her parents. I hope she will go on and do whatever she needs to do to create a life that is fundamentally better than the one she was born into and, if she ever has children, help them be much better than her. It is how we evolve.

My father never lived the life of a king, he struggled and he worked until he literally could work no more. There is beauty in that path and no one should ever be ashamed of the work they do but, all should consider why they do it.

Taraz
[ a Steem original ]

The picture is from my first father's day when my daughter was 3 months old.

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Very interesting to hear this, thanks for sharing.

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This got me all emotional I won't lie... This reminded me so much of my grandpa I could not help but to cry a little. He also never lived the life of a king, but he was and always will be a hero to me for the sacrifices he made for his family.

Damn you... I'm upset that I'm emotional right now... but this was beautifully written. Ok.. I'm done.

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Sorry. It wan't all a joy to write if that makes you feel better.

Hi Taraz. I understand where you are coming from.Like you I came from a y poor home. No one would know it as my mother worked her fingers to the bone. She made sure her children were educated and had standards and respect.
I think that is where my hunger and drive comes from to never just settle but to always do more. You will always want the best for your family to move them away from what your parents and grand parents had.

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I think that is where my hunger and drive comes from to never just settle but to always do more. You will always want the best for your family to move them away from what your parents and grand parents had.

It may not always be possible but, the attempt must be made.

There is another effect that hard working lower income group parents have on their children. I won't exactly say that we were poor but we were not even middle class.
That has another unique effect on the children. I am not ashamed to do small jobs and things that others might consider below them. This gives me an advantage over them and a certain perspective on how to 'get the job done in innovative ways' as well.

PS: Thanks for the support you have shown man! Appreciate it :-)

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That has another unique effect on the children. I am not ashamed to do small jobs and things that others might consider below them. This gives me an advantage over them and a certain perspective on how to 'get the job done in innovative ways' as well.

This is a very large factor that comes into play in many areas.

PS: Thanks for the support you have shown man! Appreciate it :-)

You are most welcome. I hope one day it is worth a lot more than i can give now :)

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I will sure be trying to multiply it many times over :-)

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I love how you write dear friend @tarazkp
Undoubtedly your father had a lot to do with the man you are, that menora of thinking and empathy with the people of the third world.
I tell you with full knowledge your grandfather should never have felt disconnected because his children migrated to other countries looking for a better life, I lived it in my own flesh with my children, being very jobenes moving away from our home in search of a better future , on the contrary it is proud to see our children make the sacrifice to improve in life.
Thank you so much for posting
I wish you a great day

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on the contrary it is proud to see our children make the sacrifice to improve in life.

Also, difficult to watch them walk away.

Ah man... dementia I am afraid that my parents will get that. I really hope not.

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I am hoping that I will die before I do ...

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Me too man.

My father passed away back in December last year. There's so many things I wanted to tell him but will never ever be able do so. There wasn't even a gravestone for me to sit next to and drink beer with, as he asked for his ashes to be spread in the sea.

it's been 7 months plus now and to be honest it hurts, scary thing is I know it'll always hurt as long as I live. And goddamit i'm only 24 years old this year.

I know you're tired of hearing all those "spend time with him" advice by now but lemme give that to you too. If not for him, for yourself at least.

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Yes it can be hard t lose people close to you but, it is a natural part of life that everyone has to come to terms with. Don't let the pain of loss stop you from moving on.

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It is indeed. and am trudging on regardless. Perhaps one day i can come to terms with it.. perhaps.

My mum had dementia as well so I know what its like dealing with a parent who at times is like a little child. On a good day, they drift back to when they were a child, they're so sweet and you can get snippets of their younger days out from them. Absolute precious.

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It is similar to a book of their life relived it seems.

No shame in hard work, or living within your means, or making sacrifices for those you love. Matter of fact, they are some of the most noble actions we can take

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I don't know where we will all end up but, we are currently eating ourselves to death for not much of actual value.

This reminds me a lot of my father. I'm young and I thank you for your post, because every time I realize how much work my dad does to feed me every day.

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Great publication friend @tarazkp, your father, like many others gave their best for their children, that is something that is appreciated and is an example for us, if we can give a good example to our children to be people of good ...

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Thank you for sharing it, my friend, it has been very interesting for me, and I see that it has touched the hearts of many people, reliving moments or remembering significant people like parents and grandparents. What comforts me so much about these situations and about people like you is humility and the quality of the person, excellent.

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You got a 32.13% upvote from @ocdb courtesy of @tarazkp!