i'm going to tell you a little bit about the best man i know----my dad.
there are people in this life who shape you, help mold you into the person you are trying to become. my dad has been that person for me my whole life. i can never remember a time where i didn't look up to him, where i didn't want to be more like him.
my dad is my hero.
and not because he's strong and manly and all-powerful (ok, he's pretty much those things too, don't get me wrong).
he's my hero because he's good.
in every way that counts, my dad is a good man.
my dad is kind.
there is a kindness about my dad's heart that i've watched and observed since i was a little girl. i always knew that if someone needed help my dad would be right there willing to give it. i learned to love and appreciate the gift of service through watching my dad give of himself so freely, needing absolutely nothing in return. i was little, but i could see and understand that the pure love that came from giving was far greater than any amount of money or reward.
my dad is wise.
to me, my dad was always the smartest person in the world. (sometimes tied with my brother)
he fostered a love (okay, sometimes love/hate) and respect for learning and knowledge that i still appreciate to this day. he pushed me to do my best, to reach a potential that i wasn't even aware i was capable of striving for. he always told me i could do anything, be anything i wanted to.....if i just worked hard for it. even now, when i'm freaking out the night before a test, i call my dad and he reminds me that i'll be fine. just do my best and that'll be enough. (i tend to not believe him....but i'm working on it)
beyond all the intelligence and book smarts though, is an even greater amount of wisdom that i am continually seeking to understand. i go to my dad for advice because i trust in what he has to say. i know for absolute certainty that he will never lead me in the wrong direction.
my dad is patient.
oh, my heart is he patient. there's no better way to put it than to say i've dragged my dad through hell and back. you see, i was in a dark place for a very long time. when i hit my teenage years in fell into a deep dark hole that i wouldn't be able to pull myself out of for nearly 10 years. i hated myself. i hated everything about me and especially hated feeling anything. so i did everything i could to not feel. in order to do that i had to stop caring, and in the process i changed. my dad was there through it all. he tried to help in every way he possibly could, but i was in such a dark place that it became impossible. i wasn't really there. i was mean. i was cold. i didn't want anyone caring about me because i didn't think i deserved it. i didn't want to live anymore and i almost made that come true more than a couple times. i can't imagine the pain my dad must have felt, watching me actively trying to die. i regret more than anything else the pain i put him through. if i could take that back.....oh, believe me, i would. he never left me though. even though i pushed him away every chance i got, i knew he was there and that i needed him. he somehow knew i would eventually find my way, and he was right there waiting for me with open arms when that time came. i can honestly say i wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for my dad's steadfast love and faith in me. he believed in me when i gave him every reason not to. he is always there.
my dad is fun.
we have similar senses of humor, my dad and i. being around him makes me laugh. if you've ever been through a drive-through or a checkout lane with my dad, you'd know what i mean. my dad knows when to take life seriously and when you just need a good laugh. i can always count on him to make me smile, no matter what. even at my beautiful boy's funeral and sitting beside his hospital bed in the days preceding his death, my dad and i found a way to laugh through the pain. i'll forever be grateful for our inside jokes that allowed me to breathe, if only for just a minute as i was going through the hardest moments of my life.
aside from being funny, my dad has fun. to see him and aubrey together is to know what pure joy looks like. they giggle together like something i've never heard before! they are silly and i love watching the two of them together. he's like that with all his grandkids and he was like that with my brother and sister and i growing up. he plays. he's like a big grown-up kid at heart. i hope he always stays that way.
my dad is my comfort.
the minute i found out there was something "not right" with my beautiful boy my dad was in my corner, willing to do whatever it took to help me find the answers i was so desperately searching for. on two separate occasions my dad accompanied me to different hospitals around the country in hopes of finding a doctor that could help my sweet boy. he saw the pain and suffering Connor was enduring and i know it broke his heart. our last trip to New York was a long shot. i sought out the top neurologist in the nation for diseases of the basal ganglia and i was secretly hanging all my hopes on this one visit. i sensed that my dad knew the outcome this trip would bring and i love him so much for taking us anyway. he was there to hug me as we left that day, knowing how devastated my heart was that the answers i wanted i was never going to get. he knew that i knew my sweet boy was dying and if it hadn't been for him i think i would have crumbled that day.
my dad is my rock.
as i've mentioned before, my dad has been through it all with me. no matter where i was or what kind of trouble or darkness i was in, i knew my dad was there. a constant reminder that i was loved and that his love would never go away. i've relied on that strength more than ever these past few years. as my beautiful boy was dying and in the months following his death i have needed that strength. i've needed it like i need air to breathe. when i forget how to breathe i call my dad and he finds a way to talk me through it, to remind me. when i don't think i can possibly live one more second with this pain, this ache in my soul where my son used to be.....i call my dad and he strengthens me. just his voice and the love i can feel through the phone gets me through. i need him.
my dad is my person.
he's the best man i know.
he eats raisins by the cheekful and makes the best cinnamon rolls (Parry rolls) in the world.
he'll play a mean game of Scrabble but refuses a rematch in Othello due to my undefeated record:)
he tells the best bedtime stories a kid could ask for.
he supports me in everything i do and i want nothing more than to be like him.
aubrey told me i needed to find a husband and when i do, "he needs to be smart and funny and make mac and cheese just like Papa."
1. Do the right thing
2. Don't be a dumbass
happy Father's day to all the fathers out there and especially to my dad.
love you daddy.