Among the many favors I may have asked my Tatay (it’s how he wanted me to call him), this one I vividly remember. I was 7 years old then, fond of watching television mostly cartoon shows: The Jetsons, Popeye, Flinstones, Scoobie-Doo and more. I watch a lot of HBO, too (whatever it’s called then, I refer to movies shown on TV). I liked fiction and fairy tales, Never Ending Story was one of my favorites.
For quite some time I became a fan of the movie Casper because of its theme song “Remember Me This Way” (which I used to sing a lot) and my crush Devon Sawa (handsome). Trailers of Adams Family Values then appealed to my senses where Cristina Ricci (the lead actress in Casper) was a co-star. I wanted to watch the film. I didn’t like scary movies or ghosts but I was drawn to how the teenage actress will portray Wednesday Adams. I felt like I was an early teen at my young age.
My dad and I used to stroll a lot in the park and watch movies in the cinema. I still remember our date watching the premiere of Alladin; but Adams Family was the only one I recalled to have specifically requested. I wanted to see Adams Family Values! I wanted to watch this film!!
And so little Jonah got to persuade Tatay Ruel to go to the mall. Online directories weren’t available then, and we didn’t find time to check the newspaper if the movie will be shown at the mall cinema. We dropped by two nearby malls but failed to see Adams family. We had to ride the LRT to a far-off mall (from Intramuros to Ever Gotesco Caloocan); Great! Dad could have been advised by someone that time that Adams Family Values is now showing there. I was excited, though I didn’t show it much. My feet seemed aching with the long travel we had.
We arrived at the cinema level of Ever Gotesco; but I found out that the movie I wanted to see was PG13. “Could I still go? I whispered to my dad. PG means Parental Guidance, and my parent is with me. I stand a chance! I even thought about looking at the mirror and check if I could be mistaken as thirteen. “Go ask the lady.” He mentioned to me pointing to the woman inside the ticket booth. I approached and asked hesitantly, knowing within me that I probably have dragged my dad for a long journey of failure and get a no for an answer. I can’t imagine how my sad face could have looked like. I still remember the feeling of not getting what I wanted. “Not this time, Jonah. Let’s go check another movie.”
Our day ended watching Robin Williams’ Mrs. Doubtfire instead. (Aha! The movie was about fathers and all these could have been a trap). I don’t recall if I was sweet enough to say thank you to my dad for walking the extra mile trying to please her daughter. I sure didn’t get what I wanted, but I experienced for a time how he was willing to stand by my side while pursuing what I wanted to have. That experience of accompanying me where I wanted to go, even if things didn’t end up the way I want them to be, left a mark on my heart.
Thank you for creating sweet moments with us when we were still children. We’re happy knowing you’re willing to make extra sacrifice for us to possibly give what we want. I miss being your little girl.