Happy Birthday, Dad!
|My Mum and Dad today. They look good, right?|
Today we celebrated my Dads birthday. I know some people really hate their age. Mostly because at some point we realize that we are no longer wishing to be older. We've accomplished all of the fun milestones and we feel content and happy with the 30 something age group. I'm not sure why, but the number of my age has never really bothered me. Maybe it's because I've never really looked my age, and now I take it as a health challenge to not "look" my age. Whatever that really means. At some point, people stop looking an age. They either start looking older or don't seem to age much.
So today, my Dad turned 72. I know this number should seem old but when I see my dad I don't see someone that fits that age description. He has shown me that age really is just a number and not one that should define you. I wish all of you could get to know him, but that might be a challenge. My dad is an introvert and takes a little time to get to know but once you do you would see what I see and how blessed I am to have him as my dad. He's not perfect but he's been a good dad. I think I'll keep him.
For his 70th birthday, a couple of years ago, we (my brothers and I) each wrote him a letter about who he is to us. It's funny how even though you grow up in the same house, you can have vastly different experiences and memories. I thought I'd share with you my letter to my dad. It's my way of showing you what a great guy he is. So Happy Birthday , Dad! And I'm sorry if this post embarrasses you. I wanted everyone to have a glimpse at your awesomeness!
Todays standards of what makes a man are probably the most blurred as they have ever been. There are always “those people” that will criticize and judge your actions. Everyone has in their own mind, what they view as a hero. If you look at history though, people have revered those that have remained strong during adversity, have known when to allow their moments of weakness to show, to
be the voice that they can hear that leads them, to know when to be the calm in the storm.
I'm sure when you saw me those 40 years ago, you thought “Wow! She’s beautiful! Look at her! Oh my!” and then followed by maybe a little bit of internal panic and “Holy smokes what am I going to do with a girl!??” Don’t worry. I’m ok with that. Just keeps you on your toes!
Here just came your storm! Just kidding. I was the easy one!
You became a dad to a girl and with a little help, started to figure out what that meant. Now this isn’t going to be about a dad who had tea parties or played dolls with his daughter, but about MY dad. You. I never really liked playing dolls anyway!
I think we figured out early on that the way we can talk to each other is through sports and your work as a veterinarian. Now, this isn’t saying we couldn’t communicate about other things, but that this was where we connected. I loved throwing the ball around with you. I loved playing on the same team as you. I loved watching you play ball. I loved working with you after school. To this day, when I see the International Coffee ads it takes me back to working at the clinic. Remember how stained those coffee mugs were? Huh. Anyway, I digressed. More recently, you became my running partner and then my Crossfit partner. I can’t tell you how special that time was for me. Running with my dad. Lifting weights with my dad. That’s not something you had the time for when I was younger, but now, now is a new season. I have loved this season with you. I was always proud of you, but now, as an adult I realized something. I think that even though I am the girl you weren’t sure what to do about. We get each other. I think with sports and hard work, we are more alike than what I thought. It didn’t become clear to me until we were doing Crossfit together. Thank you for that. Thank you for that tenacity and perseverance that you have shown and that you have given to me. Some people may call it stubbornness but I choose to see the better side of it! :D
My dad WAS,
the person that taught me the right way to throw a ball.
the man that made sure to tell me he loved me almost everyday.
the one that was my calm, quiet place.
the one who shared his love for the outdoors with us.
that taught me to change my own spare tire.
that taught me that I can take care of myself. I didn’t need a guy to rescue me.
the one that demonstrated to his children his faithfulness to God.
the guy that knew just the right words to say to make me feel safe.
the one that wrote me my first poem.
my example of a Godly husband.
the one that could crush me with the 3 words, “I’m disappointed in you.”
but also made sure to tell me, “You’ve done good kid” and “I’m proud of you."
My dad IS,
still someone that tells me he loves me.
someone that I am proud of.
Someone that I am in awe of.
my workout partner
the guy to call to talk about baseball/football
the one that is still a calm quiet place.
A great Papa.
You have faced adversity and struggles in life and while maybe you’re not perfect (you’re not? jk), you have remained steadfast and true through it all.
You have been my calm in the storm more times than I can count and I’m sure you were not really all that calm in my early 20’s but you had me fooled. Your voice is what lead me out of darkness when I was lost and broken. And YOU can climb a rope, run, lift weights and do Double Unders at the young age of 70! You didn’t let the diabetes define who you are. You fought for your marriage and showed us kids what the vows mean.
Dad, you are MY hero. This. It’s so short, when I have a lifetime of memories and thoughts and it’s impossible to tell you how much I love you.
So, a toast to you. My dad. My hero.
This is my Dad, people! This was his first try and he made it to the top. It takes me longer to tie my shoes!