...A father turns a stony face to his sons, berates them, shakes his antlers, paws the ground, snorts, runs them off into the underbrush, but when his daughter puts her arm over his shoulder and says, "Daddy, I need to ask you something," he is a pat of butter in a hot frying pan."
-- Garrison Keillor
That's me and my dad. I don't love anyone on this earth more than my dad. He was in the hospital today from sudden chest pains and although it's nothing serious and the doctors aren't worried, I of course am. He'll be released around 2:30AM so I'll probably be awake until I hear back from him or my mom. Nothing is worse than being away from home when your family is sick. I wish I were closer to go sit with him and entertain him at least. Although, he's probably taking this time to rest and sleep... two things I know he doesn't do enough. I'm grateful he's probably fine and it very well could be just a digestive/diet issue, but I think what made me most upset today was realizing that he won't be around forever. I know, I know, doom and gloom and how morbid... but really I never thought about it before. I thought that about my grandparents, but neither of my parents have had health problems really ever to put them in the hospital. I just think the world of my dad and I can't imagine a world without him. So my five things aren't just what happiness means but what I love about my dad...
1. I have never doubted that he is proud of me. Every accomplishment and achievement in my life, big or small, my dad has genuinely beamed and told me how wonderful I am.
2. My dad's sense of humor is so corny and dumb sometimes, I often wonder if everyone would be surprised at how loud and cheesy he can be around our friends and family. He's been known to use a few obscenities here and there for shock value at which he always laughs afterwards at how ridiculous he sounds. For my dad to imitate 50 cent or Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, he can't even get through it without laughing. My dad is also an easy laugh. To this day, he erupts into stitches when he even thinks about old episodes of Keenan and Kel. Particularly this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_IJEIeRghA&feature=related 4 minutes and 20 seconds in...
3. I am the only one who can tell my dad if he's being ridiculous. Of course my mom has no problem telling him either, but what I mean is when my dad's temper is getting out of control or he's being unreasonable about something, I always let him know. this sounds like I'm being a brat but really my dad and I are more alike than anyone else in our family, so he trusts me when I say "You're being ridiculous. Take a deep breath and calm down. Yelling is not going to get us anywhere." At the same time, my dad has told me a number of times when I am being mean to my mom. Sometimes we butt heads and because I am so stubborn, I have a hard time saying sorry. My dad always tells me to say sorry.
4. He is fascinated by everything. Walking through the woods he might point out a bird and tell us some little known fact that make it the coolest bird ever! He's also always fascinated at what he doesn't know and what he learns... particularly from throwaway comments from my mom revealing genius insight on something she thought was obvious but my dad never considered. He is still fascinated that I can understand the "language of the drive through" (someone usually accompanies him to McDonald's just to translate), or that I can pick up exactly what mom is trying to convey with a simple arm movement and blink of an eye as she sits with the choir in the church and we sit in the pew ("Dad, mom wants to know if you're ushering during this service")
5. I am not a daddy's girl and we don't have the weirdo annoying bond a lot of fathers/daughters share, nor are we awkward or distant because I can't relate to him. I have the best dad because he is the best person, and I love him for that. Having him for my dad is the greatest bonus.
Goal - Write my parents letters with funny memories and reasons why I love them. I think a personal letter is always the greatest gift of all.