I lost my father a couple months ago. I never could have imagined back in March, when a stumble sent him to the hospital, and then into rehabilitation, that our first Father's Day apart would be weeks away.
Today, on a pre-Father's Day hike with the father of my children, to the rim of the world, Parker Lake and the southern skirt of Yosemite and the Sierra, at an elevation my muscles may never recover from, the majestic splendor of the geography, and the fact that I trailed my husband and two of our three children, gave me great pause to reflect, and appreciate.
I will miss tomorrow's telephone call to my father, but will treasure forever the voicemails I saved, and the many saved in my memory bank.
I will appreciate my father's gift of patience, the next time one of his grandchildren test us. I hope they bumped dear Dad up to first class when he soared to heaven. Afterall, he had the patience of Job, as the father of three girls.
I will think of Dad as the weather takes an unusual turn for mid-June. A Kansan, born in a farmhouse that was often rattled by tornados, we enjoyed dissecting the weather forecasts.
I will remember his resolve to protect and provide for his family, at any cost. If only more fathers placed such a high premium on that value.
I will light sparklers on the Fourth of July, and write his name in the air with them.
And I will enjoy a slice of watermelon, in his honor, with a sprinkle of salt, remembering how he loved to make homemade ice cream the old fashioned way, with a hand-crank.
My father was our family's plaster, brick and mortar. We are all the richer for that. And he was triple-blessed with three like-minded, amazing sons-in-law, who carry on his legacy on Father's Day and always, because 'ItMannersAlot'!