I was just scrolling through my Facebook feed and came across a picture of a little kid in lotus position. The caption read, “If all our children learned to meditate, what a peaceful world it would be.”
While I personally agree with the sentiment, and believe it would be nice if everyone could relax and get in touch with themselves, I heard a little voice in my head say, “And the world would be full of sissy crybabies.”
Who the hell said that?
I immediately smiled and shook my head when I realized it must be my dad’s words I had triggered.
It’s almost two years since he died and often his voice and words come through loud and clear. I realize that the “colorful” phrases I heard him say throughout my life weren’t always PC (is that even a thing people say anymore?) and yes he did occasionally hurt our feelings with mean words, but it was his environment growing up and the people who raised him (or didn’t) that resulted in his behaviors.
The remarkable thing was the magnitude of love he was able to show us till the day he died; love that he had never personally experienced growing up. He learned how to be a responsible and caring person despite his inconsistent childhood and lack of a solid parental figure whom he wasn’t afraid of. He worked his butt off and supported our family so my mom could stay home and raise us better than he was raised. We were the perfect nuclear family. Together, my parents led by example and taught my brother and I to be hard working responsible people they could be proud of. To date, I don’t think either of us has been arrested or committed any major crimes, so they must have done a pretty good job, right?
My dad had his quirks, but he was nice to everyone. He never said the F word in front of us and set good examples of honesty and hard work. I saw him drink too much only one time in my life. We were out with all the cousins and the dads were drinking beer and eating pizza. I knew he had too much when mom was driving and we had to pull over a few times on the way home. So gross.
Dad was who he was and in the end that’s what I loved about him. I’ll take all the memories and voices in my head, warts an all, and I’ll never forget him just the way he was. He did it his way.
He used to tell us he was the lost twin brother of Elvis. This is one of the songs he’d sing and I’m so glad he did…I can picture him now…