Learning From The Hands of Yaba

Yaba (Arabic word meaning dad), worked all the time. He was there, but he was not there. Bittersweet when it came to him spending time with us. Yaba was a workaholic by force, not by choice. My great grandfather dies the day before my father was to be married. Tough life, he not only had to support his new wife, but he had four brothers and four sisters and his mom to care for and provide.

Yaba taught us how to deal with stress and socialization. Through smoking cigarettes to solve problems and get things done. I think he works so hard that smoking cigarette what just part of his work ethic. It was the fabric of his DNA.

Roller Coasters Of Life

Life is something like choppy waves. You are on top one day, and then we go back to the bottom of the spectrum. I think again how my brother and I used to learn from our Dad. I think back how we used to steal cigarettes from our father. It was risky on our part, but we took chances to be deviant. We were young; we had the energy to be defiant. And after the crime was committed; we would go into the street alley and light up. It was a time of experimentation.

Limited Opportunity

Our generation life has become more comfortable. My father made sure we always had enough. Yaba sacrificed to provide for both of his families (us and his brothers and sisters).  Yaba was busy working, and he never read to us (he was illiterate in English). It dawns on me that academics was never a choice for my father. He did not have the opportunity to receive an education; due to his financial obligations to his families. Do not take academia for granted; there many others around the world that would love a U.S. education.

My father smokes so much that he would leave packs of cigarettes at home. He probably never knew we learned smoking cigarettes through his actions. He would advertise that it was okay to smoke. We learn to inhale carbon monoxide from Yaba. Nicotine was there to recruit its new victims-us.

Very fortunate that my Yaba is still in my life. He still is smoking, I tried to talk to him, but Yaba is a very stubborn person. He does have the biggest HEART in the world. Yaba helped our family as well as many strangers that he cross paths. I love you Yaba. Thank you for providing for us, thank you for paving the way for our future. I am waiting for you to quit because your son is struggling with nicotine.

Update: (05-02-2019)

Yaba quit smoking three months ago. I am still struggling to let them go. Ramadan is around the corner. I believe fasting is going to help me get rid of my nicotine addiction for good. Please pray for me.




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