It is a commonly known fact among my friends and family that I have a partiality for Korea, an admiration that has only grown as the years have gone by. One of the key reasons for this ever growing love is because of how it has affected my life for the better. Specifically, how Korea has shaped my family life. This is the start of a new series where I share the specifics of how and what Korea has done to change my view of my family.
One of Korea’s biggest broadcasting companies, KBS, is well known for its family friendly, quality content. Within the channels, there’s something called the Sunday Lineup, made up of some of the most popular shows in South Korea today. One of these shows is the Return of Superman.
Little faces peer at the camera lens as I giggle from the other side of the screen. Over 10, 000 km of distance, yet I am seeing into the lives of Korean families on a weekly basis. From hospital trips, to cooking escapades, to moments of both sadness and joy, every time Sunday rolls around, there I am, watching the latest episode about the families that have worked their way into my heart.
I went through a period of life where I was suffering from mental, medical, and academic barriers. In that time, I discovered the show, of small babies and grown men trying to live together in harmony. It gave me simple comfort in the beginning. It was a pleasant distraction from the realities I faced. But when I overcame my struggles, when I began to smile again every morning I woke, I began to see something I hadn’t seen before.
My father and get along like water and oil. While there are some points in my life where I am able to be rational and practical like my father, the moments are few and far in between. I’m more like my mother, creative, friendly, and sensitive, (perhaps a bit too sensitive). There were parts of him I didn’t understand. Why didn’t he listen to me, why did he sometimes get mad? There were many times were I cried or yelled as my young heart ached at the scoldings from my parent. I just wanted him to understand.
Being able to see these fathers, both so different and so alike from my own Dad, caring for there children, allowed my eyes to open. I loved my Dad, and he loved me, but I didn’t think too much about how he felt apart from that. Yet now I saw dads holding wailing children, feeding tiny mouths, smiling when their sons and daughters smiled. I saw every effort they made to make their children happy. And the pieces came together.
My Father works hard for me. My Father fed me, gave me a warm bed, gave me opportunities and so many memories. I learned how to bike and skate and run. I learned how to add numbers, how to appreciate literature, how to see things for myself, all from my Dad. Even the freedom of my nation is the way it is because of my dad, and so many parents like him. They wake up each and every day to serve Canada and its people.
Korea taught me this. All those families, from season one to the present day, showed me who my Dad really was. Dad’s across the world work hard to support and care for their children. To love them. My Dad is no different. I began to see things from my Father’s perspective. Why he got mad or was happy, how he saw the world the way he did. It became easier to me to admit my own mistakes, saying that I was sorry, and I would try better. My Father became irreplacable to me, once I was able to see him for who he was.
That’s what makes him my superman.