Friday, June 13, 2014

On this day my dad became Dad

34 years ago today ago this guy became a dad.  It's a full moon.  It's Friday the 13th.  And it's my birthday.  I was born on a Friday the 13th.  My mom labored for almost 26 hours to get me out.  We lived in Germany.  My parents were young.  Dad says watching his own age increase doesn't make him feel old, it's saying how old his own kids and grand kids are that really hits him.  Dad will now say, "I have a daughter who's 34, a son who's almost 32, and five grand kids ages 2 months to 4 1/2.  Hmm, cool."

To celebrate my special day Joe and I enjoyed dinner out last night (delish) and today the kids, Hannah, and I will play at Jumpology.  Doesn't every 34 year old play at Jumpology on their birthday?!?!  Tonight my cousin will be in town and he's joining us for dinner along with my parents before we all head to the beach for a family reunion tomorrow.  Seriously, I have all I could ever ask for: 

But as Father's Day approaches this weekend, this post is about Dad.  He's a good one
This guy is a hard worker.  I remember him diligently studying at our dining room table (my brother and I were 5 and 7) working towards his Masters Degree.  My mom was gone for three months on a military assignment (Dad had just gotten out of the Army; Mom stayed in for a while longer) and our baby sitter, Julie, came each week to help with dinner and baths and homework so Dad could go to class and get his work done.  Now that I have little kids running around my house I have no idea how he pulled this off or got anything done.  He made dinners (often Ukrops pizza or grilled cheese sandwiches and soup), packed lunches (always cutting our sandwiches on the diagonal), braided hair, ran gymnastics car pool, coached baseball, chaperoned field trips (that 2nd grade class trip to the Nutcracker with ice cream at Baskin Robins still stands out), made birthday treats for my friends at school (it's ok that the Rice Krispy Treats stuck together and were a globby mess), got me to the dentist for a root canal,  and somehow kept up with the house and yard while Mom was away. 
This guy is also patient and a good teacher.  He listened to my sob story over Ben & Jerry's Cherry Garcia ice cream after my first break up at age 14 (and subsequently listened to all the others thereafter too).  He taught me to always pay myself first when I started making my own money.  He didn't disown me when he had to answer the front door at 2am to find a police officer standing with me on our front porch.  He taught me the value of being honest.  He taught me to drive an automatic and then a stick shift and lost quite a bit of hair over both ordeals.  He used to take me out for lobster dinner on my birthday, just the two of us.  He's a great listener and gives great hugs.  He gets to know my friends and takes interest in them.  He's a good cook and excellent baker and we take delight in trying out recipes on each other.  He's a thinker, analyzer, researcher, and good judge of character.  And while I certainly might drive him a little nutty, he tolerates me pretty well.

The icing on the cake is that he's a great Pops too.
I thoroughly apologize, Dad, for breaking the "I won't share this" rule.  I had to.
HAPPY FATHER'S DAY, DAD.  Certainly a few wordy paragraphs don't do you justice, but know you're cherished and well loved.

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