My dad would have been 60 today. But I lost him a little over 7 years ago in a single car crash.
My dad was a hardworking, friendly, outgoing, chocolate cake loving, twizzlers licorice addict.
He was an exacting disciplinarian with high expectations, but you knew what they were. There was no guessing on what would make him happy, what would disappoint him.
I remember as a kid if I wanted to go play at someone’s house, or go do something, that his first question would be, “are your chores done?” It was incredibly rare for him to say I couldn’t do something fun if I could say “yes, all my chores are done.”
And if I paid attention, I could learn to expect other things from him. When I was 13 I bought a horse. My dad expected the horse to be ridden every day, and the stall cleaned each day…It was hard to find time to do both every day, but I quickly learned, if I got up on Sunday’s before church to go ride, my dad would clean the stall out while I rode.
When I got older and started driving, I paid for my own gas. I hated it when my dad would ask to borrow my car, until I figured out that if I said yes, he always returned it full of gas no matter how empty it was when he borrowed it. I started hoping he would borrow my car! And that was when gas was just over a $1 a gallon. If you were still with us daddy, I would let you borrow my car all the time!
I wish he were here for lots of reasons. He would love my girls. I think, while he would think my running was silly, he would also be proud of how far I have come in my journey with Multiple Sclerosis.
I think he always believed in me, even when I thought it meant he didn’t understand what I was going through. I think maybe he could just envision more than I could, past the current challenges, to a stronger future.
And though right now I often feel weak and beaten, it is a stronger future than I often imagined as a child. I have an amazing husband and three incredible girls. The future I always wanted.
Thank you daddy for loving me, for believing in me.