I love my dad. Simple as that. It has always been that way although I must admit, my love for my dad has changed a bit over the years. When I was very young, my dad seemed very mystical to me. He was a spirit who came in the night leaving all sorts of gifts for my brothers and me: a beret from Bermuda, a rug from Indonesia. He was a Major in the Air Force and during this time, he flitted in and out of our lives on a breeze.
When I was a teenager ( the nightmare of all teenagers), my dad was a statue. A rock. And I thank God everyday that he didn't smash my head against that rock for all of the stupid, stupid stunts I pulled. My dad, during this time, was dealing with his own challenges and sometimes that caused a rift between us.
When I was a young parent, my dad was. . . well, my dad. And my kids' grandpa. My dad blossomed into this guy who didn't mind having his toenails painted or having make up applied or playing with Barbie dolls. All of my kids have loved him from the moment they met him.
When I was a older parent, my dad was my standard of living. To me, he has been the forest - as strong as an oak tree, as reliable as the sap of a maple. To this day, my dad is all things natural and woodsy and strong. I think my dad has become more mellow through the years. It breaks my heart to hear him tell me that he is sorry that he doesn't talk much. Because that is so wrong. He talks very little but he tells me a lot. He doesn't understand that I get him. I don't talk much either but that doesn't take away from the time we spend together.
My dad. He is, hands-down, the best kind of dad. I see him in my son's chin, my daughter's nose. I see him in the way my oldest son deals with bad news and in the way my oldest daughter deals with good news. I see my dad in the hollyhocks growing along my fence and in the mighty oaks that are thriving behind my house.
I see my dad in everything. And I love him. And I thank God everyday that I have him with me still.