Category: thankful

Never enough time

thankful

Never enough time

You write words, delete sentences. It’s hard to find the words. There are not enough words. Tears cloud your vision so you think of the memories. Oh the memories. Too many to count. Blessed is an understatement. Our parents gave us the best gift when they moved next door to Nonna and Nonno. What a gift to grow up next door to your grandparents, ready to great you with love and support. Their life together was full. It reads like a movie, one I would happily watch over and over. Every conversation with them leads us to learn something new about their unbelievable lives together. A “perfect” love to aspire to and appreciate. The mere fact that they found each other at all makes you believe in destiny, that all of this that they created was truly meant to be. And how amazing that we could be a part of it. Lucky us.

Nonno was our family’s true north, our words of wisdom, our guiding soul, a lover of hot fudge sundaes, a baby whisperer. “Do you like to fly first class?” Why yes, yes I do. When you were around him it was easy to believe in yourself because his belief in you never faltered. From cheering you on in the basketball stands, to spending way too much on a collage of photos just because you were in them, to flying across the country for the day to watch you row in nationals, he was there. To taking you fishing and sharing the tricks to get them to bite, to taking you out for a flight and teaching you why flying wasn’t such a scary thing, to joining you for a late night game of poker or craps in Vegas, to a strong, loving hug… you knew he was always there for you. There with you. Ready to celebrate life, love and family. Grandchildren and great-grandchildren were his true joy. To him there was nothing more important, and more enjoyable, than spending time with the ones you love. For him to be a part of my life for 40+ years was just not long enough. Love you & miss you, always.

I finally see it, Dad

holidays parenting thankful

I finally see it, Dad

It’s a story that gets told often. Middle school canoe trip along the Little Spokane. My Dad was taking the day off work to come with us. I really don’t remember too much about that day, except that he brought his brick with him. The iconic cell phone of the late 80’s. How embarrassing right? I mean not only did no other Dads have one, but he was going to bring it in the canoe with us. Ug, could it get any worse? Oh yes, yes it could. At some point in the trip we tipped. Great, new school, 7th grade, soaking wet. Lovely. And yes, there’s my Dad, middle of the river, hand stretched out above, holding the brick, far from the water, out of harms way. Mortified.

Recently an old blog post resurfaced, “I Finally See You, Mom”. It’s tear inducing and if you haven’t read it I highly encourage you to. I think every Mom goes through that “Ah ha” moment about their mom, what it must have been like for them while you were growing up and what was silently, invisibly, thanklessly sacrificed. And it is bittersweet because we wish we could go back in those moments and give our mom a hug, let her know we see all she does. Tell her thank you, and that we love her for all of it. That we love both our parents for all of it.

Like I said, I don’t remember too much else from that canoe trip and that day. I definitely don’t remember thinking how grateful I was that my Dad took the day off of work, stepped away from his busy schedule, to spend time with Gina and me. I don’t remember feeling bad for him that he had to bring the brick along for the ride and had to split his time between us and his job. I don’t remember saying thank you to him for making the effort and wanting to share in that time with his daughters. Retelling the story always brings a smile to my face and the feeling of being loved, yet that definitely was not part of the story as it played out.

Dad, over the years your constant reminder that experiences and memories are so much more valuable that things has been such a gift. Growing up I definitely did not make it easy to be my Dad, yet you always showed up, even if the first quarter of the game was missed, or you had to step outside to take a call, or bring a brick along for the ride. You always showed up, with pride, love, sacrifice and support.

I finally see it, Dad. Happy Father’s Day.