Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day; Remembering Dad

Happy Father's Day to all you dads and to all you moms who took the place of dads on many occasions when raising your families.  This morning my son-in-law Trent is running in the Manitoba Marathon relay.  I think he'll be doing the first part which is 5 miles and there are 4 others who will also be doing 5 miles except for the last person who will do 6 .2 miles to finish. He's got a pretty good time.  He can do a half marathon under 2 hours.  Next week he'll be doing a triathlon - swimming, biking and then a 1/2 marathon.  I'll go to see him at the finish line but that's too much for me.  I can do that but not at the same time.  That's the effort part! GOOD LUCK Trent.

Remembering Dad

This is the first year without dad and today is exactly two months since he passed away.  It's strange to think that this year he won't be in my sunroom enjoying a barbeque.  He's spent almost every Father's Day over here in the sunroom lounger watching the wildlife in the backyard and admiring the flowers.  Here is a letter I wrote to Dad on Father's Day 25 years ago in 1986.  There is nothing unusual about me writing letters to people because I still like to write letters and put them in the mailbox and have them arrive at someone's house. I don't know of anyone who isn't excited to receive and open a personal handwritten letter.  I've sent many of them over the years but what's so special about this one is that Dad kept it.  This one ought not to have been written since Dad was living about 5 minutes from me so there was no need for me to write one which I hand delivered to his house.  Anyway, that year I was looking for a card that would express what I was feeling but they all seemed so phony and insincere.  I decided that rather than buying a card for the sake of giving Dad a card, I would write a letter to him. So that's what I did.  I remember that he took it with a surprised expression on his face and he opened and read it.  Then he started to cry. 
He kept the card all this time not just in a box with other cards (he had a stack of them) but this one was kept with his important papers - his title to his house, birth and marriage certificates and his will. Last year he asked me to sort out his papers and I saw the letter there. I was indeed surprised because I recognized the envelope as one that I used to use. I opened the letter and saw my handwriting and the date and put it back. I felt that even though I had written it, I was being intrusive about reading someone else's personal mail. When he passed away, I took the letter intending to keep it. Then I decided to read it at his memorial service because it said what I would have wanted to say. Here it is. For those of you who were at the service, you may remember. For those of you who couldn't be there, here was my tribute to Dad. Happy Father's Day Dad.



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