Saturday, June 20, 2009
Many people say my dad is quiet and reserved. Having raised four daughters and a very social wife he has perfected the art of saving his words for opportune times. When dad speaks, everyone listens. I love that about him.
I remember riding with him in his Pinto and asking him all kinds of questions about how the car worked. What does that dial do? What exactly is an RPM? How do you know when to shift? He was the smartest man in the world explaining to me the inner workings of his vehicle. I loved to hear him talk. Then we would go home and have Beans and Bacon Soup or Cream of Mushroom soup for lunch together.
I remember laying with my ear on his chest and listening to Bach on the stereo. I would imagine that his heart was the conductor keeping rhythm to the harpsichord. I wanted his heart to go on beating forever. How could I live if something were to happen to him? Later that night (and many others) he would come to my bed at night to soothe my fears and tears.
I remember joining in on his morning runs and late night garage weight lifting sessions. He had made a custom program for each of us complete with a chalkboard chart. I wasn't an athlete, but I just wanted to spend time with him.
I remember him carrying his polio stricken mom even though it hurt his back and working in the garden beside his dad doing it just how Grandpa wanted.
I remember every warm Saturday night my Senior year of High School my dad took me to town to play tennis. It kept my mind far from thoughts of being dateless or feeling sorry for myself. The night usually ended with a Snickers Blizzard.
I remember the long ride to Tennessee when he dropped me off for college. He so patiently helped me unpack and rearrange everything just right. Then he lovingly hugged me and drove away. He didn't say a tearful goodbye. He said he was proud of me and smiled.
I remember how he always took a day off of work when each of our seven children were born and sat in the waiting room until the baby came. Not to mention the times he's spent his weekend helping to disinfect our house when all the kids have been sick or being my extra hands on a field trip.
Intelligent. Comforting. Devoted. Steady. There.
I love you, Dad.
Happy Father's Day.