Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day, Daddy!

I tease my dad all the time about an incident that happened when I was an early teenager. My dad and I heard about a sale at JoAnn Fabrics on lighted Christmas village houses, and I wanted to go get one for mom for Christmas. Dad and I decided to go to the store at the last minute, and I nervously approached the store, wearing a shirt and pants I had thrown on in a hurry, and said "I really hope no one notices in the store that my clothes don't match."

So what did my dad do? He went up to every single person in the store and said

"pardon me, miss, did you notice my daughter's clothes don't match?"

"Excuse me sir, but I just wanted to point out that this young lady's clothes don't match."

I was mortified, but I was giggling the whole time. That mix of reactions about sums up much of my childhood response to my dad.

My father is a clown. No, really.. As in, he puts on makeup and large shoes, and does shows for church events and children's birthday parties. He is also a magician, balloon artist, and juggler. I was raised with a father who was the perfect blend of authoritarian leadership, and silly adventure. Mom likes to tell people that when the family would all sit down to a meal when we were kids, she would chastise us not to chew our food with our mouths open, only to turn around and find dad doing so, enthusiastically, behind her back while we giggled.

Dad never misses an opportunity to find a pun in a statement, and we grew up groaning at the awful ones he could think up (or trying very hard not to make any reaction at all, as that would encourage him).

But guess what? My father is also a loving husband. He and my mom never once argued once in front of us, the entire time I lived at home for 20 years. They were constantly flirting (sometimes in ways that I look back on now as an adult and say "DAD!") and acting like lovebirds. His adoring love of my mother served as the example I sought in my own life partner, and I am so thankful I had that to look for. It helped me find that level of romance and commitment in my husband.

My father is a loving father. He cares deeply for all three of his daughters, and as the only man in our family, he was able to both be strong and protective, and also cradle us with love and affection.

I have an amazing family. We have difficulties like any other, and we have our disagreements. But a large part of why I have such an amazing family is because I have such an amazing dad.

Happy Father's Day, Daddy!!

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