Thursday, September 2, 2010

Dance With My Father

Life is about change and adaptation. I've not written for a while due to a job change - from consultant to government servant for a dynamic, get-it-done type of Governor in the great state of New Jersey. But this posting is not about that. It's much more personal, for you see, my father died today.

Change and adaptation.

Folks have always said that to lose a parent is one of the most painful, yet insightful events to happen in your life. I believe them. This hurts like hell. You can never truly prepare for this.

Change and adaptation.

Dad is no longer physically here. I only see him now in photographs and within my "minds eye".

Change and adaptation.

But the lessons that he instilled...no....drilled into me and my sister and brother, all seem to make real sense now. Family.Honor. Giving. Helping. Mentoring, Honesty.Involvement. Hardwork. I could go on and on with a list of one word elements that he drummed into us either by word or example.

Change and adaptation.

It's amazing how, as I drove the four hours to the family home tonight, I felt myself changing and adapting to the new reality of life without Dad's physical presence or baritone voice giving me fatherly advice....on everything.

Change and adaptation.

I suprised myself that I could actually drive with tears in my eyes (I don't recommend it) one moment, and a smile on my face the next remembering some incident from my childhood that involved Dad.

Change and adaptation.

During the drive, I thought about how I was raising my own children. Did I measure up to the standard set by Dad? My thoughts turned to them - two girls, one going to college in just a few days, and I saw them through a different prism tonight.

Change and adaptation.

I saw them as I think my Dad saw me and my siblings. Wanting all the best for them with few of life's disappointments. Loving them unconditionally, but with a firm hand to help guide the way. Accepting them yet pushing them to always present their best effort, regardless of the activity.

Change and adaptation.

To say I loved and respected my Dad is easy and so very true. It will be much harder to follow in the immense footsteps that he left behind and will require.....Change and Adaptation....and I was taught well. I love you and miss you Dad..........