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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Dad

When I went to visit my parents a few weeks ago,
I was able to go to lunch with my dad.
Just he and I.
Red Lobster.
My dad is a quiet guy.
He is never found dominating a conversation,
but only adding here and there (often with quick wit).
As we ate lunch,
I was able to enjoy the conversation
and hear his thoughts (thoughts that are often not spoken in large groups).
As he always does,
he began to express gratitude for who I am.
(Maybe that's why I like him so much.)
I told him that he and grandma are the only ones in my fan club.
Then I realized that my fan club consists of people in their 80's.
I pointed this out to Dad.
He said with his easy smile, "Oh dear, I don't know how much longer we can hold on!"

Life has had it's ups and downs for both of us.
We've made good and bad choices.
But one thing that I count as one of my greatest blessings is being able to be raised by a dad who never said an unkind thing to me.
Yes, he got upset at times and "For Pete's Sake!"  was a common phrase of his, but he never said anything personally hurtful to me.

This man is special and I'm grateful that I know him.

Yesterday, I received a text from my mom that Dad was in the emergency room.
He had suddenly gotten very weak and was unable to stand.
My brother was called to help get him to the ER.
Dad's blood pressure was barely detected and his oxygen levels low.
He is stable now, but they have not found the source of the incident.

It is scary.

It is in these moments that I reflect on the small things.
I wonder if we've talked enough.
I wonder if I've heard enough about his life.
I remember little memories like how every day he would drive me home from Middle School.
We would play Slug Bug the entire drive home.
We had the location of every VW Bug memorized.
We were always delighted (you can use words like "delighted" and "thrilled" when you're talking about old people) when a surprise VW Bug would be driving around town - Bonus!

I suppose the everyday things are the things that matter, not the big festivities.
Daily things add up a lot faster than holidays.

I will work on that.

Get well soon Dad!
I can't find a picture of me and my dad, but here is one of me and my Grandma that Dad took.
He was using my cell phone so it was outside of his comfort zone and took a few takes and is still blurry, but he tried.

Whenever I visit my dad's ward or meet someone that knows dad, they tell me that I look just like him.
So just imagine me much older and a boy and you'll see my dad.

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