Every Friday I look forward to reading Lisa’s Flashback Friday post. She’s always so unbelievably honest that it really is inspiring. She’s talked about sensitive topics with grace. Nothing is off limit’s with Lisa and that’s something I adore.
Maybe it’s because I’ve been reading a lot about Lisa’s relationship with her Dad, maybe it’s this time of year, maybe it’s because I don’t talk about it much — but I’ve spent so much time lately thinking about my Pops. If you haven’t checked out my About Me section, my dad passed away from cancer in May 2008. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer halfway through my freshman year of college. Everything about that journey was hard.
There are so many things that I could focus on during that sixteen month period my dad was sick. I could spend hours telling you about things that I wish I had done, things that seemingly tore our family apart, and how hard it was to watch your dad fight through each and every day.
I’m not going to though.
I’d rather tell you about how great my dad was. Of course I’ll always be sad that he’s gone and it will never be OKAY that it happened, but I hope to always look back on his memory with a smile rather than tears. There’s no doubt that he shaped who I am today and for that he deserves props 🙂
So — here goes:
First and foremost, my dad had the spirit of a child. He was always the first to jump in the water. He was the uncle that would always take you on boat rides. Not only did he take you on a boat ride, but you would always come back to the house soaking wet. You could probably tell exactly what his spirit was like by looking in our garage. Throughout his life he owned a variety of “big boy toys.” After the boat farted out, there was the four wheeler, the jetski, the snow blower, the high tech lawn mower, and of course the Harley.
Not only was my dad a child at heart, he was always a man’s man. He loved the weather channel. You could find him snoozing on his favorite chair “watching” what he would call a “bang bang shoot ’em up movie” on that old western channel.
He always had a project. We were never a family to hire a plumber when we had problems — Pops could fix anything. He would take things completely apart, just to put them back together. You should have seen him piddling (is that a word?) around the house in WV. And of course — we were always put to work! “Let’s cut down that tree, split it, stack it, and load it on the truck to go home…”
And boy, did my dad have a sense of humor! I remember every time we took a friend up to WV he would ask them after we’ve been in the car for a few hours —
“Are you okay with sleeping in the woods?”
“We don’t have running water, you know?”
“I hope you’re not afraid of mountain lions.“
And no one could forget when you would ask him a question where the answer was clearly yes, he would respond with…
“Is the Pope Catholic? Does a bear shit in the woods? Would a HOBO like a ham sandwich?”
So here’s to you Dad. To a wonderful life, full of love and laughter. For teaching me how to be an honorable person, who, of course, doesn’t take life too seriously. I miss you each and every day and hope that I continually make you proud.
And to everyone else… Go give your dad a hug. Life really does change in a blink of an eye. Don’t just call your mom to tell her what you’ve been up to, call your dad too!