It has been a very long time since I blogged. I have no excuses I simply lost the passion. Or maybe even the nerve. But it was here I introduced people to my Parents. Moreover my Dad.
He has always been a guiding force in my life. No matter what I was going through he had a way of reaching me. For a very long time my Dad would send me little inspirational messages. I enjoyed them, sometimes laughing or sometimes shaking my head thinking where does he find this stuff.
He used to say “Bethy, you feel bad, and think it’s bad-however, and I quote I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet.” It didn’t matter the age I was, somehow he always found away to slip that particular quote in.
When I was riding high on life he would again slip a little something in. “Bethy, to be great you have to be good, to be good you have to be willing to fall down far more times than you succeed, this is all before you can be good and to quit now because you aren’t good then you have cheated yourself. Just remember this while you celebrate now, because tomorrow you have to figure out how to stay there.”
My response was always the same “But Dad!!”
“No buts about it, use a little humility and some common sense.” He’d look serious and then shrugged, “Or Elizabeth do it your way and see if maybe I might just know a few things”
” But Mom says you don’t have common sense!” I would protest.
“Is that so? Hmm. Well then keep thinking your way and see who has the common sense.”
“But Dad, this was a great day!!” How could he burst my bubble? Why would he act as if I was riding my ego as a jetpack? I might have been looking back at it.
“Oh I didn’t say you couldn’t celebrate. But 6 months ago the world was caving in because YOU not me, not your mother, YOU” as he pointed at me ” thought you weren’t good enough and wanted to quit. And now you act as if none of that happened.”
“But Dad, what is it that is making you rain on my parade?” I would scowl, stomp my feet or just let out an argh as if I had just join the crew of the Jolly Roger.
“Oh that’s simple.” He would say casually.
“What is it?” I would protest after all he was raining on my parade. He wanted me to achieve. And I’ve achieved and now I’m getting the mother load of all lectures.
“If you don’t know then I can’t help you.” He would always turn away acting very slightly like he failed as a parent. Not a great acting job mind you. I’m pretty sure it was a set up and he was bluffing as if he was holding an inside straight and he knew I had a pair of twos.
“Fine give me a hint I’m missing all the fun!”
” No hints Elizabeth this isn’t a test.” Again he would shrug his shoulders and turn to leave.
“Thanks Dad! Thanks a lot!” I would always snap.
“Ahhhhh you figured it out.” The sarcasm was thick like a London Fog just pummeled my bedroom.
“I said thanks a lot? How and when did I figure out anything?” In my head I was picturing missing jigsaw pieces, running away to the big city or swiping the car keys and taking it for a joy ride. Unfortunately, the first time we had one of these types of chats I was twelve, well at least I was tall enough to reach the gas peddle. I was however, going forward, in these situations profoundly clueless.
“What is thanks?” He’d ask.
“Something you say when someone does something for somebody, I guess?” Now I had the case of the creepy crawlies. You know where you start scratching you neck that doesn’t itch. Twisting your fingers around each other and making patterns with your foot in the new carpet. The fidgets had set in.
“Does somebody have to give you something to be thankful?”
I shrugged my shoulders, because after the fidgets set in I somehow always managed to lose the ability to verbally communicate. And make eye contact.
“Elizabeth, celebrate today but be thankful while doing it. Every success that is made has many hands that helped, every failed attempt is lonely. The good news in failure if you see it more positive mind you; is you learn from it.” It stinks having a teacher for a Dad was always my first thought. “Here is where I will leave you before you go celebrate. Take the time to be grateful and thankful. It isn’t just being polite it is away of life.”
He meant it. My Dad didn’t rain on my parade he wanted me to enjoy the parade everyday and it was his way of saying life is a parade if I would let it.
Dad, here is where you left me. Blogging again and telling the world what they might have missed or forgotten. Your words, your lessons and the journey.
And sadly it is really here on earth is where he left me.
My Dad’s parade on earth ended on August 9, 2016. The little messages to me stop on August 7, when he had taken ill.
Everyday my Dad was grateful and thankful for his wife, his children, grandchildren and great granddaughter.
Everything else? Well that’s where I leave you. Dad always knew when to let me figure it out. He always had faith I would.
I know he’ll let me know when I finally do from heaven above. Actually, he probably already knows.
I love you Dad.