The Antagonist

It’s not that I hate telenovelas and soap operas. What I rather dislike about these modern day fairy tales are the common patterns of every story. The protagonist and the antagonist turn out to be long lost siblings, children or parents. The slave will fall in love with the master’s daughter. The master will make all means to kill the slave. Slave will later return as a wealthy and educated man. The family’s patriarch will die and the heirs compete and take each other’s lives for the larger share of inheritance. 

I am not against these prime time shows. In fact, in one way or another, I receive some entertainment from them after a long day from work. However, if I may suggest, can we just make more realistic story lines?  I have been conditioned to believe that telenovelas and soap operas are too good to be true in real life.

I was convinced that my perceptions towards telenovelas will never change. Those things are not bound to happen in reality. However, a recent event in my paternal family forced me to believe that to some extent, telenovelas are for real.

I wasn’t born to a family of hacienderas, business magnates and those enriched positioned powered creatures. We didn’t have that much in life but my hardworking parents have exhausted all means to provide me a decent life. My father’s income then was just enough for my studies and family expenses. Though I admit, there were instances in my life when I wished that I was born from a rich family. In the end though, my parents raised me well and I learned to be contented with our simple life.

When I started working, I admit that I wasn’t the best provider for the family. I have bad spending habits and I am not the daughter who can uplift the family’s financial status. My parents never complained though. We have witnessed some relatives who become financially blessed. We were happy for them and swear to God, we were never envious of their financial improvement.

Everything seems to be stable in my family not until the issue of the inheritance came in. My paternal family owns a parcel of land that will obviously be inherited by my father and his siblings. Dividing the land equally seems to be easy. However, the problem arose when each family needs to shell out money to process  the transfer of ownership. I recently discovered that some relatives were already implementing actions to process the division of the only property of my paternal family. Since they have the financial resources to expedite the process, they went ahead of themselves. My father who happens to be the living eldest son was never informed of their plans and actions.

Setting aside the money issue, I felt bad for my Father. To some extent, I felt he was disrespected. My Father has always been the quiet person. He doesn’t meddle with family concerns. He seldom voice out opinions on family issues. Perhaps, some of my relatives have taken advantage of his silence. Forget about the fact that my Father is the eldest child. The mere fact that he is a member of the family, he deserves to be consulted or at the very least, be informed.

My Father never said it but he was a living example of respect. He made me see the real meaning of respect. Money can never give you respect. People may admire you because of your achievements and financial status. But real respect can never be earned in any form of wealth. It’s character that builds respect. And for a person to earn that respected character, he must live a life of honor and integrity. Unfortunately, honor and integrity require a lifetime to build and just a snap to ruin it.

I am not in the position to face my relatives. I still respect and leave everything  according to my Father’s will. The best I can do for my Father right now is to live to my promise of  never giving in to greed, dishonesty and money. 

I hate to say this but I think my family now is creating its own telenovela. My father as the poor humble man and me, the frustrated, bitter, ugly conceited, bitchy daughter…

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