A letter

Archive for June, 2012|Monthly archive page

Father Dad…

In Year 2 on June 10, 2012 at 9:01 pm

My very own father is turning 60.  I’m flooded with memories, emotions and stunned by the reality that I could have a dad who is 60.  I remember when I was a kid, that I thought 40 was old.  Oh, how things have changed.  I guess now I would say, you’re not really old until you reach one-hundred.  Even then, I think oldness has to do with the young-at-heart-ness factor.  I now get why parents say they feel like they are still 20.  I sort of still feel like I am the ripe old age of about 7.  I hope my young-at-heart-ness always stays young.

Anyhow, back to dad.  I’m not sure I have the ability to say what I want to about dad.  Father-Dad, it’s what I called him when I was little.  He called me daughter-Bep.  Oh how this man has shaped my life.  If I let my mind go there, I am reminded of being just a chubby munchkin, putting my two paws on his face and telling him he had lots of slivers (whiskers).  I remember dad playing the airplane game with us, him lying on his back feet in the air, us tummy on his feet flying through the air while holding his hands.  That was the best.  It never got old.  I wish there were a large enough human for me to do it today, though the awe of it may be locked away in my inner-child’s-mind. I remember dad yelling through the empty sanctuary after church (since he was almost always the last one left, other than the usher) “Annie-Bep”, to which both me and Al always responded, “we’re right here dad”.  It was our dual name, and we both responded always, since we were almost always together.  I remember dad telling me I was the best “nine”, or whichever age I happened to be at the time, in the whole world.  I believed it, and though now, I know that that was dad’s way of making sure he could have lots of bests (all his kids), I believed it and knew he meant it through and through.  I remember lots of fun family vacations, vacations for which dad would spend days digging through the garage and closets finding all the fun water toys, rain gear, or whatever that type of vacation called for.  Though, we may have had 4 boxes of books, which dad may have only read several of during the vacation, I loved knowing that if I wanted to read a good book, dad for sure had one or  fifty along.  Dad just never wanted the risk being without what you might want or need.  I got my packing skills from him.   I will have to thank him for that. Young childhood memories, branded in my mind forever, days back at our old house when dad would lay on our floor in the dark at night and “read” (say) scriptures to us.  Looking back I realize that in order for him to “read” scripture to us in the dark required him having them memorized which is far more amazing than I once knew.  I can still hear the sound of his deep voice reciting various Psalms to us as we fell asleep.  Dad loved mom well, and showed us what a husband aught to be.  Dad has shaped how I love people.  No one was ever a burden, or an inconvenience, or too unlovely to love.  Dad is a lover of people and has always been.  I hope to love like dad has loved his whole life.  What a beautiful picture of Jesus.  I remember, countless young men, from the neighborhood eating meals with us, or dad playing hoops with them out on the street.  I remember dad inviting a single mom and her boy home for Christmas Eve one year.  I remember dad crying over kids who didn’t have a dad, he still does to this day.   Dad has been an example of forgiveness and humility.  Dad has displayed courage, and obedience.  He has unwavering dedication and does not tire or loose heart.  He has shown me how to be a lover of God, and a lover of people.  He believes in me, encourages me, and still tells me I am beautiful.  How did I get so lucky, I ask myself?  How did I get so lucky? For my dad, 60 displays what youthful zeal and wisdom look like after hanging out together for a really long time.  It’s a beautiful picture, and I’m glad it is mine to look at.  I guess, finally, you could say I got my sentimentality from him and am thankful I did.  I feel sad for the folks who don’t miss, or reminisce, or feel the twinge of happy-sadness from time to time when recalling the past.  I think I got a rather large dose of this quality and though it hurts at times to bear such a sentimental soul, I feel richly blessed to have it.  I should thank him for that too.  I love him dearly, and admire him immensely.  He is my hero, that he is.

Love you, Bep

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