Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

In honor of Father's day, even though part of me wants to be bitter, I thought that I would write a little bit about my dad.  He passed away six years ago, wednesday. It kind of stinks that it happened so close to Father's Day, but God's plan is perfect and I just keep trusting as I go.  Many of you never got to meet him, so I thought I'd share a little about who he was to me and write a few of the memories that I have of him. :)
Dad and I were really really close.  As a little girl I went with him EVERYWHERE- I was definitely a daddy's girl-  He even took me with him to the various farms that he worked at. I started out just riding with him and playing with the baby barn animals, or the other kids when I was little.  As I grew, I started helping him out with his work.  He had such patience with me as I would get so bored, and probably very annoying, waiting for him to finish his paperwork.  But that's who he was, a very patient man. 
He was a very quiet, soft spoken man.  He never said much, but carried a presence with him.  I would say that everyone that knew him had highest respect for him.  He rarely raised his voice, but was stern when he needed to be.  He was a hard worker and a man of his word.  He never spoke badly about people and  was an amazing example of a Godly man.
Every night, he would tuck me in and say prayers with me and rub my back or feet when I asked him to.  This continued all the way until he became too weak and I was the one who tucked him in, rubbed his aching back, and prayed over him harder than I ever had prayed before. 
I always had a feeling that he would pass away while I was younger, it was something that I just knew. However, I was always afraid that he would die in a car accident.  He drove everywhere for his job, at all hours of the day and night.  Waiting for him to come home was torture.  He was pretty much blind, so blind that he saw round bales in a field one time and thought that they were wild buffalo. Haha! He refused to get glasses because he didn't want to spend money. So, he wore these OLD glasses that I have to giggle about every time I think of them.  I'm not sure exactly when he got them, but these things looked like they had been through the war and back. I think there was only one thing attached( the things that holds them on your ears) yeah, there was only one, and it was held on by electrical tape.  So, pretty much, he had to balance the glasses on his nose.  The lenses were completely scratched and foggy, I'm not sure  how he even saw out of them. Haha! But he swore they helped and he looked ridiculous every time he wore them.
Some people may not like the song, but pretty much at every wedding our family went to, Dad and I would dance to Butterfly Kisses.  This was our song.  I couldn't wait for the day that I got to dance to that song with him on my own special day.  That's never going to happen, and it's one of the things that I struggle with the most. The thought that he will never walk me down the isle and give me away, or even meet the man I will spend the rest of my life with really gets me.   (I should be thankful that I even had a father and got to experience that great priveledge.  Some children have never gotten to experience a father's love.)
.  I will never forget the moment when this song played on the radio a couple weeks before Dad passed away.  We were coming back from one of the farms he was working at.  I was with him to help out because this was during the time that he was starting to become very weak.  Butterfly kisses started to play and I prayed as I looked out the window with the sun shining on the fields as we drove by thinking about all the times we'd danced to this song before.  We both sat there silently listening to our song. As the song faded out, and a few small tears were rolled down my cheeks, I looked over to Dad and saw that a few tears had escaped from his eyes too. After a few moments, in his soft caring voice, he said "Wow, I haven't heard that song in forever." Then he looked over at me and said" They played that just for us."  What a moment and a memory I have. I realized that the song meant as much to him as it did to me all those years. 
Dad loved to experiment in the kitchen. Although he was a good cook, he made alot of scrambled eggs, mac and cheese, and pizza.  My cravings didn't let him branch out much. :)  He still managed to keep things interesting.  We always knew that if he asked you how it tasted, that meant that he did something different than usually, it was mostly a scarey thing.  Haha! 
He was never satisfied with how fluffy his eggs turned out, even though they were 10 times fluffier than I could ever hope for mine to be, I still don't know how he did that.  He decided that baking soda may be a good fluffing ingredient.  Sorry Dad, but that was an epic fail. Lol. The eggs didn't even cook, they just sort of foamed everywhere.  He must not have learned his lesson because he tried the same thing with waffle once. Same outcome. 
Alot of people say that my dad and I were pretty much the same person.  Which, i agree that my demeanor is the same as his, although I've become a lot more outgoing these past few years. This one memory shows just how scary it could be at times that we were so similar.  We had gotten our first computer and while he was at work one day, I decided to get on and explore all of the awesome features that it had.  In my searching I found the calculator and exclaimed, "Oh cool! A caclulator!"  I wanted to try it out, so I typed in my favorite multiplication problem 6x7, to my surprise, the answer came out 42! It worked!  Dad came home a few hours later and explored the features of the new computer while mom and I were on the couch.  After a little while, we heard him say, "Oh cool! A calculator!" I just laughed and ran to see if it would work for him too. Guess what he typed in to try it out.... Yep! 6x7.  He got the same answer too. :)
During the last few weeks of my Sophomore year of high school was when he started to get really sick. He wasn't eating anything.  He had no appetite and became weaker by the day.  My choir banquet had arrived (This is the one where all the awards were given and the new members were inducted into the Young & Alive)  This was the moment I had waited for since I first saw those sparkly red dresses in the gym of my elementary school- I think I was in Kindergarten then- I couldn't wait to be in Y&A. I had tried out, and that evening I would find out if I got a rose, which meant I would get to be a part of this magical group.  I knew Dad was weak and his back ached all the time.  He didn't need to suffer and sit through that banquet.  So, I begged him to stay home. I told him that mom could run home to pick him up before the Y&A inductions so he could just be there for that.  He refused to stay home and ended up eating two whole chicken breasts! Lori always caters the choir banquets and her chicken is pretty much the best and Dad knew it.  It was the most he had eaten in weeks! He made it through the whole banquet and even though he never got to see me perform, he was there to see me receive my rose.  
Some random things I remember and miss about him
-The way he always smelled of the barn when he came home from work.  I don't know why, but I just find that comforting.  You could tell which farm he'd been to because they all have distinctly different smells.
-He had a strange obsession with Meg Ryan.  She was his favorite actress and he would watch anything that she played in
-We would go into the movie rental place and while it would only take me 30 seconds to run and grab my favorite sing a long with Mary Kate and Ashley, it took him FOREVER to pick out a movie for him and Mom to watch. I definitely inherited his indecisiveness. 
-In the summer, his left arm would be 10 shades darker than his right arm because he always drove with his arm hanging out the window.
-He always gave a two finger wave.  I always laughed at him for that.
-When he was deep in thought or worried, he would rub his index finger over his mustache.  This sounds weird as I write it. Haha. But that's what he did. 
-He also rubbed his feet together while he watched TV.  I find myself doing that a lot. 
-His favorite commercial was that one with the little pug dog.  It was for some kind of medicine.  The owner of the dog was chasing after it and at the end, the owner was riding up the escalator when he passed his dog that was riding the down escalator.  For whatever reason, he found this to be the funniest thing he'd ever seen and would laugh so hard, he would cry.
-He always came to my rescue when there was a spider.
-Sometimes he would buy me a carnation on Valentine's day.
-He hated it when I got my hair cut short.
-He always told me he would not approve of any guy I brought home that had earrings. Lol, he was really weird about that.
-He was always fascinated with technology.  I wonder what he would think about the world now- iphones and ipads, he wouldn't know what to do!
-He would ask me questions from my notes to help me study for tests.  
-Somehow he always knew what time it was. Seriously.  He had an internal clock or something.
-He always read me Bible stories before I went to bed. 
-He would make me a glass of warm milk sometimes when he came back to say prayers.  He always put it in the pretty little glass cup that I loved so much.
-He always wore a trucker hat.
-I never got to actually go to a tractor pull with him, but when we were walking out of the Canfield fair at night, every year, we would stop at the grand stand and watch part of it from outside the fence.
-In the winter he always wore a black sweatshirt and one of those thick flannel vests.  It worked for him because there were no sleeves to get in the way while he was working.  When I was with him in the milk parlors shivering, waiting for the set of cows to be done milking, I would hug Dad so my arms were inside the vest. It was so cozy. 
-Another thing that was cozy was his suit coat jacket.  Pretty much every sunday, especially during the summer, i would wear my little sundresses to church and end up freezing during service.  He always gave me his suit coat jacket to wear.- One of my favorite memories. :)
There are many other things that I could write about Dad, but I don't want to bore you all.  I really wish you all could have met him. .
However, the Lord had other plans for my life and I have such a testimony through this experience.  I'll have to write about that another day.I miss him a lot.  Sometimes it's worse than others.  
But I love thinking back to the memories I've had with him and I'm glad that I can share them with those of you who read this
I'm wishing all the fathers out there a very Happy Day!:)

1 comment:

lauren.nicole said...

This post is so beautiful! I wish I could have met your dad too. If you really are like your dad, I'm sure he was a great man! I love you so much and I admire the faith and trust you have in your God. Praying for you today!

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