wish you were here

“any man can be a father, but it takes a special person to be a dad.”
 {the babe with the awful rice bowl cut? yep, that’s me 🙂 }

batting practice. forehands with topspin. free throws. filipino breakfast recipes. how to be a leader of others. how to never ever give up on your dreams.

i’ve learned a lot of good stuff from my dad.
i was also forbidden to hang out with boys – talking on the phone, dating, etc – while all of my friends had their first teenage romances in junior high. one time, one of my guy friends gave me a hug goodbye and my dad almost busted a gut. the combo of being his only daughter and his younger sisters getting married and have kids at a young age made romance only available in my sweet valley high books & 90210 episodes.
so for the first 13 years of my life, my dad was the man in my life. he coached me, challenged me and was my biggest fan.
and one day – the week before my junior high graduation – just like that, he passed away.
i’m sure i’m not alone in saying that the loss of a parent is one of the most devastating things anyone could ever live through. and because the heart attack came out of nowhere, it took me a long time to realize he was really gone. most mornings, i’d wake up thinking it was just the most horrific nightmare. other times, i’d replay the voicemail he left us one time on our message machine so i could remember what he sounded like.  and while i was in high school and now free to date any boy i wanted, i would’ve traded in everything to have the man in my life back. 
but life goes on….and so did i. and while i thought that the years of being forbidden not to date would make me a crazy dating machine in high school & college, ironically i ended up spending more time on me, chasing my dreams and hoping, along the way, i’d stumble across love. 
i dated 5 boys, kissed 7 and had 1 boyfriend before that fateful night I met my soul mate. the rest of those days, months and years, i was dating ME. and looking back, it’s the one relationship i’m most proud of. maybe that’s what he was trying to teach me all those years.
now, as i head towards this new adventure with the new man in my life, i find myself missing my dad a lot more. sure, i’m bummed he won’t get to walk me down that sandy aisle and dance that first dance. but i’m more wishing he was here the day i got engaged, so he could whisk me up and spin me around like he used to. and i wish he could meet rob, because i’ve come to see how similar they are in so many ways – they’re both scorpios {according to the old zodiac chart!}, have magnetic personalities, love baseball and all things sports, and teach, push, cheer and love me every single day.
instead, i’ll be keeping this photo with me on our wedding day. it’ll be tucked in my purse, as a reminder that he’ll be there too. 
* * * * * * * * *

friends, your sweet thoughts and inspiring comments are the bright spot of my day. please make the jump, hang out and share what’s on your mind. 🙂

Leave a Comment


  1. Huda wrote:

    thank you for sharing such a personal family bond and the precious love between a father and daughter with us. I lost my dad @ a very young age and he’s still larger than life in our family.

    Posted 3.23.11 Reply
  2. Hi Sylvie, I can’t believe I didn’t know this until now. My dad, who was my hero, passed away when I was 20 and it profoundly changed my life and me. I remember what it felt like to not have him there when I got married, but I knew that he was watching. Carrying his photo with you is just a metaphor for carrying him in your heart. I am with you sister!


    Posted 2.3.11 Reply
  3. Ashley K wrote:

    roomie…your memories of your father are beautiful! you have brought me to tears and as always you remind me to think about the many blessings of life. you are a beautiful, strong, and wise woman and your father would be so proud of the person you have become! i’m so lucky i get to call you my friend. sending love and thinking of you <3

    Posted 1.29.11 Reply
  4. silvie,
    i am so very touched by your tribute to your father. He sounds like such a wonderful man and father, my heart goes out to you. I am a believer that those who aren’t with us anymore will always be with us, watching over us in spirit. there is no doubt your father will be with you on your wedding day, and will be whisking you up and spinning you around in joy.
    thank you for sharing this post with us — i know it is so personal and difficult to do. i’m thinking of you!

    Posted 1.28.11 Reply
  5. This post made me tear up. So heartfelt, I feel for you. Your dad is surely watching over you, and so very proud of the person you’ve become.

    Sending you warm thoughts,

    Posted 1.27.11 Reply
  6. i still have several of my dad’s emails…go through them every now and again. has been almost 6 yrs since we lost him. i’m thankful i had 30 years with him that i did have.

    Posted 1.27.11 Reply
  7. EMILY wrote:

    This is really such a sweet, poignant, and tender post. Thinking of you…

    Posted 1.27.11 Reply
  8. flyrish wrote:

    Such a lovely post. What a special bond you had with him. I lost my mom a couple of years ago and what keeps me going is feeling fortunate to have even had her in my life at all. It sounds like you feel the same way. I’m sure he will be all over that beach wedding in spirit.

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  9. Oh darling, I’m weeping at the office. This is such a beautiful tribute to your dad, who was obviously an amazing man and incredible father. You were so blessed to have learned so much from him when he was here, and I know all that’s happened has made you the incredible woman you are.

    xoxo, Lena

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  10. nadia wrote:

    I lost my dad suddenly as well, at the age of 14. I was always sad that he wouldn’t be there to give me away at my wedding, but when I married my best friend last September, all I could feel was his love. As you will, each and every day of your blessed life.

    Very touching post.

    Take care,

    xo Nadia

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  11. Bunny B wrote:

    i’m at loss for words, but i just had to tell you that this is such a touching post, i’m crying. xox.

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  12. tanvii.com wrote:

    Such a heartfelt post. I couldn’t resist letting you know that it was such a brave thing to write this and let the world privy of your emotions. I am sure your father and God both will be watching over you on your special day!

    Hope all your preparations are going well and you are having a ball planning it. There is no doubt it will be a unique ceremony ‘coz you have such an eye for beauty.

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  13. Miranda wrote:

    this was a truly moving entry. and bless you for showing such courage to tell your story to us, and letting others who have gone through similar experiences feel connected and in some way, uplifted.

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply
  14. Oh, sweet girl… I’m crying. I lost my dad too. This is probably the most touching blog post I’ve ever read. You are a glorious spirit and I adore you so. Your dad is up there watching out for you… and he’ll be there that day.


    November Grey

    Posted 1.26.11 Reply