Sunday, June 17, 2012

To my daddy on Father's Day...

 This photo was taken in 2009, on my dad's 74th birthday. I just wanted to reflect today on the blessing otherwise known as my daddy.

 My parents were in their late 30s when I was born. I had a dad who worked hard, paid the bills and was a wonderful money manager. I always remember him being a wonderful son to my Nana, who passed away when I was 10. He has always been kind, a hard worker and intelligent. He wasn't a pushover though and has always held the philosophy that he refuses to be a victim. That proved true in the '70s when he held a burglar at gunpoint at home one evening until the police arrived. This teenage burglar was a neighborhood kid who had stolen from other houses on the block and no one put their foot down with him to say enough was enough. That is, until my dad. The father threatened my dad after the kid was arrested, but nothing happened, as my dad didn't back down.

 Dad was a very active parent when I was growing up. He was always at school events, carpooling for my Girl Scout trips and even volunteered as a chaperone on a biking trip for Girl Scouts. I am grateful to have had such an involved father in my life.

 Dad probably took me on more boyish outings than I cared to go on. I went to the shooting range often with him, gun shows and even the LA Auto Show with him once. The gun shows always bored me, for obvious reasons, so my bribe would be that he'd buy me turquoise jewelry if I'd go with him.

 I learned kindness from my father. I learned respect of family from him, as he was always taking me to visit his side of the family. You name 'em, I met 'em as a kid. There were Christmas visits to Baldwin Park to see great-aunts and uncles. There were family get-togethers galore on that side, which I can see as an adult was wonderful for kids to have. I cherish a photo taken at a family get-together when I was 6 that is priceless.

Rockin' a sundress at age 6 while standing with my dad, my grandmother, my great-grandfather and his 2 sisters.
  I learned from Dad that it's okay to question. It's okay to be different. Those who tell you otherwise aren't worthy of your time. Dad has always been politically involved (that's how my parents met, actually) and was always writing letters to the editor and attending political events. I think his last political event was a Tea Party Rally a few years ago, which he loved, even though he's pretty hard of hearing and couldn't understand half of it due to that.

 Dad's winding down now due to his health. He's almost 77 and has congestive heart failure. The cardiologist wanted him to have bypass surgery last year, but he refused. The heart surgeon said that if one more artery clogs, he'll fall over from a heart attack. He still won't budge, which I know is because he's scared. I'm sad about that for selfish reasons. I know the truth though, and the truth about where he'll go when his time comes. I know that Dad has accepted the Lord as his savior, so I have no fear about that.

 Happy Father's Day, Dad!  I'm grateful to have had such an awesome dad in my life.

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