Virgin's Guide to Burning Man

A Virgin's Guide to Burning Man can be found here.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

I love you, Dad

So I wrote this post: Lessons From My Father in some state of anticipation of Father's Day.

But now as I reflect, I think more needs to be said. My father is losing his ability to remember things. It makes me cry to think about it because, as frustrating as it for the rest of us who must hold the same conversation with him multiple times and help him manage his life, it must be a billion more time frustrating, frightening and debilitating for him. My daddy was my larger than life super-hero, and it is so very hard to watch him become broken by the processes of time.

Because he is losing his ability to remember, the rest of us must do more to keep the memories alive. So Dad, here is what I remember:

I remember riding piggy-back on your shoulders and laughing like I couldn't ever stop.

I remember playing hop-skotch at the playground after school and then running to the swings. At my beck and call, you would push me higher and higher in the swing and I'd watch my feet kiss the sky.

I remember when I was six and found out it was your birthday, I felt horrible for not having a gift. So I took a book from your library and wrapped it. When you opened it, you still pretended it was the best gift ever.

I remember wishbones, and how you'd always let me have the wishing side.

I remember you giving me rides to friends' houses, piano lessons, school and wherever else I needed to go. We always had our great "talks" in those car rides.

I remember how you always made my sandwiches so lovingly. And those sandwiches always tasted better than any other sandwich, because they were seasoned with Tender Love and Care.

I remember every single time you told me I was beautiful, I was talented, you were so proud of me and I could do anything. Even if my self-doubts meant I didn't really believe you, some little place in my heart always did.

I remember when others say you as being too gruff, too demanding, I always wished they could see through the surface and really understand you. You weren't being mean; you were trying to help them be better people. Because you hold yourself to such a high standard, you try to teach others to do the same.

I remember how giving you always are. When you find a true friend, you give them everything you have and more.

I remember all the times you helped me move, from dorm to apartment to apartment. You even helped my boyfriend move, when he was too sick to do it himself.

I remember how you kept my secrets; the ones I dared not ever tell anyone else.

I remember how you used to call every night and when you'd complain three days was too long to go without hearing from me.

I remember when I told you I was getting married, my fiance instantly became family.

I remember on my wedding day, when we danced, how you lingered at the end, not quite ready to let go.

And through everything, I remember how your eyes would light up and I could read every emotion in your face. And I remember your big, warm embraces, and how no matter how big I got, I always seemed to fit just right.

Happy Father's Day, Dad.


  1. This is an absolutely wonderful post. As long as you remember all of these things, your father's memories will live on in you. I cannot imagine how tough it is for you, but take pride in the thought that he has helped you be strong enough for the both of you. All of these wonderful memories are building blocks of a life, and despite his failing memory, nothing will be lost because it is inside your heart and mind.

  2. Thank you so much for your very sweet comment. I really appreciate your kind words of support and encouragement!

  3. Ok, stop making me cry at work! I'm sorry to hear about his memory loss, that must be very hard for you and your family (and him). BIG HUG (and wet kiss).

    Another memory you can add is when you introduced him to your freshman year suite mate for the first time she was so hung over that she puked lettuce through her nose at lunch and instead of judging her he laughed it off and offered her a Coca Cola in the hopes of making her feel better.

  4. Aww...thanks for the hug and the memory! My dad's such a sweetie. I'm happy you remember him that way too.


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