Farewell to father – the story of dad and mom (Part I)
This chapter is about her dad’s death and strong bond between her parents, the ideal couple she admired the most. It’s the saddest chapter that drives many people (including normally sadistic Fukuen Misato) to tears and also the hardest chapter to write. It’s difficult to summarize without lessening the strong emotion she put in this chapter and I don’t think I did a good job for this, sorry. This chapter took a lot of time than I thought – -‘
I decided to make this chapter into 2 parts as it is very long.
Dad went hospitalized
- Her dad died in October 2008 at age 76 after 10 years of hospitalization.
- Before he went hospitalized, the normally energetic dad began to go absent-minded, hear things and often wander around aimlessly without realizing what he did. Hence, mom forced him to go for diagnosis.
- The doctor found out he had serious ischemic strokes and it was nearly a miracle that he could live normally until then. As it was diagnosed quite too late, there was nothing they could do to cure it. He was told to stay in hospital for close observation since that time. It happened when Nana was 18, 2 years before her debut as a singer, so he never had chance to attend Nana’s lives.
- Nana hesitated whether she should come back to Ehime to help mom taking care of him but mom stopped her, saying that Nana should stay in Tokyo to continue her dream because it was what dad wanted the most and she was fine by herself.
- Though she behaves like traditional obedient wife, mom is a strong person. She was the one who told Nana to prepare herself for she may not be able to see relatives’ last breath once she decided to follow her dream. She even told Nana not to attend her grandmother (mom’s mother) funeral as she had work to do.
- In order to cover extra expenses, mom had to take part-time jobs while still had to run their enka school alone.
- Dad’s condition worsened from time to time. He regularly passed out, had amnesia and finally forgot things and person around him except his family.
- Along those 10 years, Nana often talked with mom on the phone. Mom always explained dad’s condition calmly and she had never cried. She said she was fine with Nana coming back home once a year and that she didn’t need to come back often as she should concentrate on her works. Nana felt useless as all she could do was to send more money to support her parents.
Farewell to father
- One day, after she finished recording a Naruto anime episode in the afternoon, she received an unusual message from Mom. She called back and found out that Dr. said dad might not be able to make it past that night.
- She took sudden leave and rushed from Tokyo to Ehime by the fastest shinkansen. She arrived in Niihama in the next morning; however, when she saw her mom, who usually was by dad’s side, waiting for her in front of Niihama station, she suddenly knew she couldn’t make it in time. Dad passed away the night before.
- Feeling lost and lamented, she wanted to weep and cry loudly when she saw his face but couldn’t because dad always talked about being professional. She couldn’t be just Kondou Nana even in the funeral. To make the late dad proud of herself, she had to be a sad but graceful “Mizuki Nana” in front of other guests.
- The thing she regretted the most was that she hadn’t had a chance to tell him how much she loves him when he was still alive.
- She found out her parents had to endure all gossips from neighbors for years. They thought sending Nana to Tokyo was a waste of time and money. For people in Niihama, she was only an unbeknown star since she had never been appeared on national TV or normal magazines. (Before getting national media exposure after joining Music Japan crews as a program narrator, she appeared only in local TV programs or national but lesser known TV shows and seiyuu magazines).
- However, there was ruckus happened before the funeral started. Firstly, several telephone in the funeral rang constantly, then many wreaths and flower bouquets from several shops were brought in continuously that the staffs wondered if all shops in Niihama run out of flowers. Most of them were ordered from Tokyo. It was because King Records and Sigma Seven publicized news about her dad passing away.
- Receiving more than 150 wreaths, tons of flower bouquet and big piles of condolence card, it was one of the liveliest and biggest funerals in Niihama (of course it surprised their neighbors). Nana and mom could laugh for the first time after his death since they knew what cocky dad would say if he saw it: “See? I’m cool, aren’t I?”
- She finally had time alone with him and she sang the first song he taught her when she was 5 as a farewell gift for him in tears. She also talked about all things she wanted to but never had a chance to tell with him, i.e. about works, her feeling for him and how she wanted him to see her concert once.
Minami no Hanayomesan. The first song she learned from dad.
- She accepted all requests for autograph from other guests in funeral because caring for fans as priority was another thing dad taught her.
- She had to go back to Tokyo for works the day after funeral. Being alone suddenly after the funeral made she began to feel sad and lonely. If she was by herself, she would think about him and ended up crying, so she had to keep herself busy with works or find a company with friends to put the thought away.
- Some might already know that Nana wrote and composed Yume no Tsuzuki for her dad but she revealed for the first time that Shin’ai was also dedicated to him. It was written only 2 days after the funeral and was recorded 7 days later. Initially, she was told to write a love song for romantic drama anime, White Album, but she decided to put all feeling for dad and her family in this song. Hence, Shin’ai was about family love more than romantic love. Its title means deep love for all special someones and it’s her favorite song title.
- Therefore, she felt glad that Shin’ai was the chosen song in her first Kouhaku performance since it’s a song dedicated to her deceased dad and Kouhaku was his dream stage (her mom also was in NHK hall with dad photo)
Shin’ai @ Kouhaku Uta Gassen 2009 – Most Nana fans might watch it already but can’t help putting the perf that marks the day when Kondou family’s 20+years dream came true.
Yume no Tsuzuki – Here is > lyric and translation
The second part will be about her parents and her view of love. Another difficult topic to summarize – -‘