Saturday, August 18, 2007

Fatherhood


This is me and my Dad. My Dad was my hero growing up. He always told me that he could do anything and my childhood innocence believed it. As I grew older, we had our share of fights, disagreements, and shouting matches that I chalk up today to the stubborn streak of independence I was searching for as a teen and young man.

But over the last few years as I have seen my Father get older, I look upon those times I spent with a more appreciative eye. My Dad was a great man and I appreciate him and his sacrifices he made for his family more and more as the weeks pass.

My Dad worked a 40-hour a week factory job, carried the clock as security for the same factory on weekends, and painted houses on the side. The fact he had any time left for his three kids is a miracle. But he always did. He always had time to take me to the doctors every Saturday morning for 15 years. He always had time to play catch or throw a football or teach me something about the mysteries of life. He was honest and forthright and told me like it was.

For a long time I never knew if I wanted a child of my own. I put off the the idea for a variety of reasons. But as I got older, met Jen, and we started to seriously talk about kids, I had a change of heart.

I wanted my Father to hold my child in his arms before that opportunity would be lost with age and frailty. I wanted to see my life come full circle and to see the joy between Grandfather and Grandchild. My Grandfather died when I was young and I miss him. But more than that, I miss knowing him. My older siblings had the opportunity to "know" their Grandfather and I wanted my daughter to have at least some of that.

I very much look forward to telling my daughter about the hero that was and is my Dad. I look forward to telling her about his life, his service to the nation, his sacrifices for his family, and his kindness. I only hope that I can be half the father to my daughter that my father was to me and that he will be proud of what I have accomplished in my own life.

Our daughter is named after my Dad's Mother, Sara Williams. She passed when he was very young and so I only know her from pictures and remembrances. I wanted to name my Daughter Sara so that my Father could get to know another Sara that, like his Mother, would be a small part of his life.

I love you, Dad.

1 comment:

Andi said...

Eric,

That was beautiful!

I am like you, Eric, I never really knew my grandparents but for a different reason. I live many states away. Mom and Dad both left their parents when they married. Back in the 70's phone calls and trips were very expensive and rare. I was never close to any of my grandparents.

I never wanted that to happen with my kids. I believe that DK and J learned their grandparents' phone number before their own. I believe that DK has called both grandmas at 4a.m. in the past!

My greatest joy as a parent is that my children have a stronger relationship with their grandparents than I had with my own.

A~~~