top of page
  • Riane Capalad

Midnight Thoughts About My Late Grandfather I Never Met

Updated: Dec 3, 2022


Photography by Mark Clennon

Isn't it crazy to think that we are made by random movements and moments of people that came before us? Your parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and beyond. I want to share last night's prompt from my gratitude session with my lobster rolls sisters (our group name). The prompt was about embracing the father side of you, one's masculine energy, and answering the question, "How do you father yourself?"


And as we were meditating, I saw my lolo, a Tagalog word for grandfather, who passed away at 40. Yep. That’s right. I never met the old man, but I would talk to him like how kids communicate with their imaginary friends. I was 7 years old when my curiosity started. I wanted to know him more - his character, persona, maybe a favorite song, what he reads in the newspapers, or the love letters he wrote to his mahal (dearest love), my grandmother. Every detail about him fascinated the life out of me! So at this very moment, I keep writing letters to him—thinking that he's reading them from another dimension, heaven or paradise ( at least that's how I imagine it).


He has always been an iconic father figure to me.


From Left to Right: Grandfather Lolo, My Aunt, My Mother

All my life, I thought having these intense feelings for someone you had never met was weird. Then I realized and accepted that I'm a person who grieves. A type of unexplainable grief that comes but never goes. Thinking that death stole the opportunity to know him more as a person—to ask his thoughts about his favorite sport (he was a volleyball player) or to even make random moments with him.


His love is an inheritance passed to those who experienced him, so I can inherit and feel it too.

I wish I had met him in life and not in the memories of others. But in his loss, there was also a celebration of breaths. We grieve because we love. His love is an inheritance passed to those who experienced him, so I can inherit and feel it too.


To answer the question above, I father myself by revisiting my grandfather's legacy because, in his legacy, I find hope, security, and kindness. That even in my darkest days, I could see the light and be utterly kind to myself and the people around me.


Now ask this question to yourself, "How do you embrace the father side of you?"


If you're ever yearning for a family member or anybody with whom you've never met but always felt an unexplainable connection, I'm with you on this life and this experience. Let’s talk about it.



bottom of page