#Lesson 1:Just because people look happy does not mean they have never been sad

Somewhere Early 2013

(one of those classrooms in Assumption University)

“I did not see him die so for me he is still alive.”

Half the class was silent because they did not understand and the other half was silent because they did not know how to react.I was silent because I knew my words would not have taken her pain away.

In Thailand Father’s day is celebrated in a grand way and since it was coming soon my Marketing lecturer was talking about her father

She said she missed him..terribly..she missed him more than she should have..and the more she missed him..the more she could not forgive her self.

This lecturer of mine always dressed loud,with vibrant colors,highlighted lipstick and dark eyeshadows and sexy high heels.When she walked in class with her perfectly french manicured fingers moving and expressing her emotions she left  behind the scent of Chanel number 5 all across the room.

A lot of girls in the class(including me) envied her for her perfectly maintained hourglass figure,for her ability to afford the occasional trips to Paris ”Just for shopping” and bringing all of us a small token of love every time she traveled,she was Oh so High SO!

Nothing looked unhappy about her..everything about her was the definition of happiness,her perfect skin tone and toned body…nothing we could see told us about the burden she was carrying on her shoulders.

”I was a workaholic,I was always about achievements and money and since I always told my family I was busy when they called,they did not think it was right to tell me how unwell my father was getting,they thought they would disturb me!”

She said with sadness..

”How would a daddy’s little princess be ”Disturbed” with her father’s health information I do not understand…  but they HAD to call me that morning when I was lecturing 300 students…and you know what that call was about?”

None of us dared answer her..and she continued

”It was my sister saying he was no more.. that my father was no more..”

I saw her eyes moisten up and could almost feel the lump on her throat..almost..

”I did not know how to take that in so I hung up I came back to the class,completed the  2 hour lecture and went back home.”

”I called my father’s number more than 50 times..left him voice messages to call me back but there was nothing more than dialtone that I heard when I called..I gave my self false hope saying my sister was lying because she is the mischievous one who is always playing pranks on people… .I got an e-ticket  from my brother immediately so that I can go back home and attend my father’s funeral..”

It was as if she was re-living that day in her head again,I knew she did not see anyone of us in the class room.

”You know what I did? I did not go! I did not want to accept that he was no more…Because I never saw him sick,he is healthy in my heart the way I remember him is him in his tennis shoes with his baseball cap and a happy smile..my father was never unwell and even if they say he was for me he is not..even if they say he is dead..for me he is not..after 5 days of living in denial I finally had to get a hold of myself…..I weeped my heart out until my tears dried..until I felt empty….I never went back home….I can’t go now…or else they will prove it to me that he is no more..”

My eyes were moist but I didn’t want her to see it…I was not sorry for her I was sad..but then she taught me that no matter how sad you are ,you should always carry yourself as a warrior who has won over life’s griefs and come out as a happy person so that you can spread happiness.. she taught me to smile as if nothing happened even if your shoulders feel like stone..

She is one of the bestest lecturers,and I hope some days she forgives herself.