Saturday, March 7, 2009

Happy Birthday

I just want to give a shout out to my Dad today. Happy Birthday Dad. It is his 81st birthday today. I guess with men it is alright to say their age out loud. So hey Dad Happy Birthday! Let me tell you a little about this man who I love so dearly. He and my mother were married when they were both kids at the ages of 17 and 18. Then it wasn't too long until they were kids raising kids. Any of you with young families know exactly how that goes. Rent or mortgage payments, grocery bills, doctor bills, little sleep and never feeling like you can stretch far enough or be in enough places to take care of everyone and everything. As we turn on the nightly news and hear of job layoffs and a poor economic times they aren't telling this generation of 80 plus anything new. They lived it, pulled themselves up from it, worked so hard, saved what they could, tried to put their kids through school, or at least keep them in a new pair of shoes when they were growing like out of control weeds. There wasn't instant gratification for this generation. It was hard earned and grown over a long period of time. So much wisdom we could learn from them.

I want to share with you one of my dearest memories of my Father. Everyday after working in a factory that we lived close to. He walked to and from work. At the end of each work day my brothers and I would wait for the time of day when dad punched out at work and started walking home. From our home window or yard we could see as he turned the corner and we would race to meet him. My dad whistles happy, sad, busy, whatever he whistles. As we would run toward him you could start to hear the whistle. As we reached him he would pick us up put us on his shoulders and we would ride the rest of the way home perched on the best spot in town. Listening to the contented whistle. Thankfully my siblings and I are spaced several years apart in age. So each of us had our turn in who was able to ride home on dad's shoulders. Yeah, that's what life is all about. Good memories of a loving Father who meets us in the most simple moments of our day.

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