Today, It has been nine months and nineteen days since I left. Three thousand kilometers of distance. This is the longest period of time that we have been apart. I miss you, I remember you all the time. Suddenly, I remember things I did not think about before, suddenly they all keep jumping in my face, so many memories, some warm, some cold, some tough, and some just beautiful.
Do you know that I can remember the days you were teaching me the Arabic alphabet and the French Alphabet. Whenever we have a guest, I run to them and start shouting " A,B,C,D,E,F......." They smile and ask me who thaught you all this, I run to you, I hug you and I say " Dad taught me".
You took me to the beach, you taught me how to love it, this is why now the beach is where I find my soul, where my heart feels at home, where I feel a very strong sense of belonging I dont quite understand. We went to the beach whenever we want, and in summer , It was our real home.
There, I grew up loving Jaques Brel songs and watching sunset ands sunrise, bathing in every breeze coming from every corner of the ocean. You gave me every joy a child should have, the happiness a child will never feel again in their life.
You tought I was the most intelligent student you ever taught, You always told me I will be a prime minister or a University professor. You loved how I enjoyed reading books , you bought me every book I wanted, we bought old cheap books , you said these are the books I needed to read even if they were so smelly and dusty.
I grew up knowing you are a great man. I remember when we go out , we meet your old students, they were all grownups, they keep telling you how you were the best teacher they ever had, how you helped them be better students.
I remember how you got into so much trouble just to make a difference, to make thimgs better, how you almost went to prison for writing an article in a newspaper. Nobody understood why you were so determined to talk about bribes and election manipulation. I didn't understand it either, I always thought you just loved getting into trouble like my mother used to say. But later, I knew why you did all what you did.
In spring time, we would always sit on the roof, in the sun, we eat those big oranges and we read newspaper. We talk about so many things, I tell you about school and you tell me about those theives who are rubbing our country. You love talking politics with me, maybe because I understand you, and I listen, well, I don't really understand much when you talk about the seventies Coup d'Etat and all the terrible parties in our government.
Now that I am lonely , now that I miss you so much, I go back to those ordinary mornings, when you wake up so early and you try to make yourself tea while everybody is still asleep. You make so much noise, then me and my brothers start screaming " Dad, we are trying to sleep", you yell back so loud "Sorry kids", but you can't help it, you could never be quiet. You did it almost every morning. Now these memories make me laugh, make me smile, they give me a tremendous joy that fills my heart.
I remember your smile, such a beautiful smile that makes us feel that things are fine, and when you laugh, you laugh so hard and you make us all laugh with you.
You wanted me to have a good job and do something good for my country, I know that you never thought I would leave. But, you let me. When you knew my heart was not mine anymore, you let me go. Now I know, that was the hardest thing you had to do. I knew it that day when we were at the airport, when you held my husband's hands and you told him" Take care of my daughter" and you cried. I have never seen you cry in my life, even when my mother told me that you cried when my grand-mother died, I couldn't picture that, I couldn't believe it. You cried when you had to let me go. The memory of that day kept me awake for so many nights father.
I don't want your heart to feel sadness for me, my heart doesn't have any for you. I am happy as you always wanted me, like you first named me. You gave me the best childhood a kid could wish for, support and so much love. I am happy I was a good kid and I never caused you problems,though I am so sorry I complained about being poor sometimes, and kept asking you why we are poor, I know that made you sad. I am sorry. I know you understand, I was a teenager and I wanted stupid cute things like other girls.
Your smile lives in my every morning, your kind touch stands out in my sad days, your blessing words remind me of who I am, your tremendous love lives in my heart, your warm voice gives me company when all voices are gone.
I love you more than I thought I did, and more than what you think I do.