Memorial services for the dead are always a reminder about our limitations as human beings. That someday, sometime, we will also join those who have passed before us.
The death of Michael Jackson and the media circus that followed reminded me of another death about a year and half ago.
Former Indonesian president Soeharto, the creator of the New Order, who ruled Indonesia for 32 years, died at the end of January 2008 after a month at the hospital. The (Indonesian) media circus during the month of January 2008 was similar to Michael Jackson, with reporters and trucks and vans camped out in the hospital parking. They hounded the doctors, nurses, and even the visitors.
And when Soeharto finally died, when his oldest daughter spoke through her tears, I cried along with her.Just as a few days ago, I cried along with Paris Jackson.
Both Tutut Soeharto and Paris Jackson reminded me of something… that after all the hoopla, all the attention, all the unhappiness, all the weirdness, that above all that… they were somebody’s father.
They both had children, who cried for them, who loved them unconditionally, who are probably wondering why everyone has an opinion about their father.
And that, my friends, is a valuable lesson in itself. Your father is YOUR father, no matter what people say about him. He loves (or loved) you unconditionally, was willing to move heaven and earth for you, protect you from all the bad things around.
Those who are blessed to still have their fathers in this world (like me), don’t forget to hug them and tell them you love them. And for those who have lost them, say a prayer for them.
Sorry for not being coherent, it’s been tough.