About Dad

When I was a little girl, my dad was a giant. He loomed over me.  And being a little girl I had not yet learned about how to tell how tall a person was. I just knew he was the tallest man I knew. Even as I grew up, I remember him always being taller. And now at my age (44) he still towers over me. In the case of my father, I don’t think it is the height of a man that determines his presence as much as it is his passion for passing on what he knows.

And it seemed to me that my dad knew about a lot of things. He was smart because he read books. He was always using big words. I had to look some of them up just find out what he was talking about. But because of that I do the same thing to my kids today. And I got really good grades in English. It actually became one of my favorite subjects. I love words, books and the use of them. He gave that to me.

He also gave me the ability to create something out of nothing. There was a time when I needed a box for something. “Well,” my dad says to me, “make one.” I just looked at him. So he showed me how to make a box. And because of that I always did really well on those diagram tests where they show you a diagram and then a picture of a geometric object that the diagram would be if it was folded up. How does that fit practically into my life? I have been able to look at a problem and see the outcome thereby finding a solution. Where there is a will, there is a way. That happens to be one of my greatest assets and has served me well in every endeavor I have taken on. 

 I guess the one area in my life that failed me by using that ability has been matter’s of the heart. And I think that I also got that from my father. As a man, he may not have always shown his emotion or been able to express his feelings adequately but I know that he feels deeply and has passion. His whole life he was never afraid to try something new.  Whether it was building something, taking a picture, repairing something broken or being adventurous, he taught me that you can do anything if you literally put your mind to it and even put a little heart into it because it is more satisfying if you do it with passion. And so that too makes me my father’s daughter. And I am proud to be his daughter.

MMP, Office Administrator

Daughter of LDL, Electrician, retired – General Electric (1942- Present)

In reading the book “Wisdom of our Fathers” by Tim Russert, I thought back over the years as to what kind of man my father was and the impact he made on my life.  In the front of the book there is a place to write a memory about dad and so I did.  I sent it to him for Father’s Day.  I found this book to be very endearing.  Tim Russert wrote the book in response to his first book “Me and Big Russ” about his father.  It seemed to have touched a cord in many peoples lives that read it.  Daughters and sons from all over the country sent letters to Tim Russert telling him about their dads.  After receiving so many letters he thought it only right that they be compiled into a second book.  It reminded me that our parents are not perfect but even in their imperfections the give us many gifts.  We can choose to focus on the mistakes they may have made or the effort they made to give us a better life then they had.  Being a parent now I can understand many things that I did not understand when I was growing up. Things my parents tried to tell me and I was too stubborn to listen.  Isn’t that the way?  Happy Father’s Day to all you Dads!

Looking Down, Looking Up!

It seems that most of my battles these days are between the persons that I am closest to.  My family…parents and children.   It is hurtful and painful to be rejected or to be misunderstood.  Perhaps I am not good at clarifying my intentions or living out what I believe.  Somewhere it all gets muddled up when I am trying to defend my actions.  Do I believe what they say if it is more than one saying it?  Or do I just consider that the evil one wants me to doubt God and His promises?

Maybe it has been that way my whole life.  It is hard to come face to face with my shortcomings.  Where does one begin to change…if it is indeed I who should change?  What if you are not able to be objective about it?  What if love, or the idea of love gets in the way?  What if it turns out to be selfishness?  Is is selfish to want your children to go a better way?  Is it selfish to witness to your lost parent?  Sometimes it seems as if every experience is senseless if you can not use it to teach others. How do you do that without alienating the other person, or pushing them away even further?  What if it is a child who judges your ability to be a parent or a parent who judges your faith walk?  None of these have walked in my shoes!

While I know God has a plan I am not sure that I am following it exactly.  Our lesson in Sunday School had to do with discerning God’s will.  There was the usual list of words, all beginning with the same letters of what God’s will was not.  I got that but what does that mean to me? Especailly if I became a Christian during the last 15 years of my life, when I had already made so many mistakes, too many to count.  I had already had two of my four children, which I dedicated to the Lord when I became aware of the fact that they really did not belong to me. I gave them, each one to His authority, His purpose and His will. But I often feel that I failed Him in raising them His way.  So many things have happened to continue to tear apart any effort I have made to keep them in God’s Word.

As a single parent the burden is overwhelming to me.  I can’t do it all.  I can’t cover all the areas that need to be covered.  Just when I think that I checked one block another issue comes to the forefront. I can not rest for one minute because of all the things still to battle.  Yes, I know I should give Him my yoke and rest…but how can I rest knowing that the very souls of my loved ones are at stake.

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:  Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.” 1 Peter 5:6-9

This is hardest thing for me to completely get into my thick scull, at this point in my life.  With the smallest glimmer of hope that is in my heart, I hang on by staying my mind on the victories and all the amazing, wonderful things I have seen God do in the last three years even when everything looked utterly bleak.  And all of this is at time in my life where God has seen fit to put me in a very lonely place.  He has taken everything and everyone out of my life that would possible step in to rescue me.   I am not so sure I want to be rescued as much as I want confirmation. Confirmation that perhaps I am in His will afterall and thus giving way to the knowledge that He will most definitely work all things for good!  It is then that I could rest!