My father, what do I say. I love the man to death, but for me he wasn’t the perfect father, but neither was I the perfect son. I can say now that he is one of the closest family members I have. Part of that is my nature, part of it is the relationship we strengthened when I was traveling on the road and my dad and I had many hours of long conversation. Either way we have a great relationship now.
Though he will say otherwise, I’m not exactly the child he wanted. I wouldn’t worry too much about that though, my son could easily turn into a mustang driving jock, very far the opposite side of me. I’m sure I’ll have to deal with the same problems my father did; not understanding the time period, not understanding what I was going through in school, and not understanding me. Part of this is par for the course of being the oldest child, and part of it was the differences that sprung up in interest. My father collected alot of books growing up and said he enjoyed reading, I would say this is one thing we have in common over the long course of years. The problem is I don’t ever remember my father reading a book.
If we set aside some of the truly negative memories we can focus on some of the more interesting memories:
- My father forcing me to do practice with the Greenville HS swim team when I was 12 because I was swimming circles at swim class of those my own age
- Driving home in one of my father’s work beater cars that he went through that had holes in the floor boards and you could see the ground
- My father taking us to my grandfather’s in Greenville every year and taking us out for Maid-Rites
- Taking my brother
- Teaching me to play Chess at age nine (and my brother learned also when he was 4)
- Setting up a swing in the garage, until a neighbor girl fell off it and smacked her head
- Sneaking change from his dresser some my brother and I could sneak up to Convenient and buy candy
- Building us a clubhouse, that eventually was vandalized and was burned down
- Building us snow forts in the mounds of snow left behind by snow plows
- Picking me up from the police station when I was busted for shoplifting at age 14
- For being there later in life when I needed him
For being a decent father to a rotten son ;P I can say he did an ok job. He taught me to take acceptance of the consequences of my actions, that I need to be my person. That I can do things my way, and as long as I was making forward progress he wouldn’t stand in my way or get mad. While I didn’t see it growing up, I can look back and say my father made me a better man.
Happy Father’s Day Dad.