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A letter to my daughter on her 2nd birthday

Today, my daughter is 2-years old, and I’m unfortunate that I won’t be by her side.

Now that she’s two years old, understanding separation and the very fact that I’m not there had been making her hate the words “Bye Bye.” She would be angry at her mother – “No Bye Bye! No Bye Bye!” These days, she cries, “No Bye Bye” when anyone dear to her says “Bye Bye.”

Those words used to be something she likes saying, knowing that I’d return home and watch TV together, play around, sing & dance all night, swing in the garden whenever she wants. The last gleeful “Bye Bye” for her was when I left her early this November. She felt it was routine until she realized I was not returning for quite a while.

Dear Laaija,

Happy Birthday to you!

I hope you'll read this one day and forgive me for not being there. I hope we can cherish these moments of separation in the hope that we'll spend more time together in the future. By the time you read this and ponder upon the lost moments -- you'll no longer need me to help you with the swings, you won't need me to push you all-around in your scooter, you would even have stopped crying and nagging me to buy you a new balloon each and every-day.

To most people, I was more of a heartless person hardened by the bitter experiences of Life. I had a hard time respecting relationships and had never pursued one meaningfully. However, after you were born, I began to realize the profound impact and importance of the human connection, love, forgiveness, and the ability to express them openly without burying them deep within myself.

You'll soon learn that Life is brutal and very unforgiving at times. There will be times when you feel that the whole world is conspiring against you, trying to prove you wrong even at some of your best intentions. Many a time, you'll be left alone to fend for yourself, even out-casted in some cases.

You'll also learn that when the going gets tricky when you're at your weakest, tempted to take shortcuts, you'll try to get away by lying, doing superficial actions to make you feel good in front of people. I know that you've to learn through all the facades of Life but let me tell you early on, it's always better to do the right way. There is always a proper way of doing things.

Patience is a virtue you've to learn and practice right from your early stage in Life. Modesty is something you'll know when you faced multiple failures and can learn from them. Honesty is another you'll want to practice and master when people have cheated you. Do good, and you'll earn goodness.

I can give you an excuse for being away from you today, but I won't. However, I'm trying and will do my best to be there for you more often than not in the future. I'll tell you lots of stories when you grow up; I've lots to talk to you. I've lots to teach you from all the failures that I stumbled in my Life.

I love you.
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