I was awake early this morning and as I laid there in the dark I was contemplating all my blessings. The past several months I have tried to focus more on gratitude and I must say that since I have done this, my perspective has really changed. This morning I was thinking about my Dad...
I was blessed to be sent to a loving home with two wonderful parents. The older I get, the more thankful I am for this opportunity. My mother was an exceptional woman with multiple gifts and talents which she freely shared. I will write about her in a future blog...My father was equally as gifted, talented and generous, however he was willing to allow the spotlight to shine on my mother. He quietly went about his business taking care of the family and didn't worry that my mother got all the attention. So here is why I love my Dad...
Dad has always taken care me. I am told---since I don't remember--that he and I have a special bond because he held me a lot the first six weeks of my life. He was finishing engineering school and my mother had to type all of his papers for him. So he held me and fed me and played with me, while she typed. As I grew up, I remember that his work (both employment and church duties) took him away from home a lot. Despite this, he was always there at times when I needed him.
At the beginning of the school year, he would give each of us a Father's blessing. Periodically he would interview us to make sure we were doing alright. I will never forget the day that I got my interim report cards and I was failing algebra. The teacher had written nothing in the comments...he said, "My daughter is failing algebra and he can't even tell my why?" He scheduled a meeting with my algebra teacher. I don't remember what he said about that meeting. What I do remember is that he took the responsibility for my education and began tutoring me in algebra. I am so thankful for this. He will never know what confidence this instilled in me AND from that point on I did very well in math classes.
I had another issue involving school during my senior year. I will spare you the details, but the situation was that I would have to meet with a member of the school board to resolve an issue. The plan was to have my mother be there as well. The night before the meeting, he sat down with both of us and explained in detail what would happen in the interview. He told us what the school representative would say and then how we should respond. The next day, I was called into the meeting earlier than planned--I don't believe this was an accident---so I had to go alone. Because my father had prepared me, I was able to speak clearly and confidently and I must tell you...my father was exactly right. The representative recommended that the school resolve the issue in my favor---much to the school's dismay.
Over the years, my father has continued to offer counsel and support--emotional and financial when necessary. He has been there for me through many trials and challenges. I am thankful to have been able to share with him the responsibility of caring for my mother. This was particularly challenging and at times frustrating for both of us. When she died, I watched as his world collapsed. Again, he was an example of strength and faith. He fasted a lot. He studied the scriptures and attended the temple often. He petitioned the Lord in prayer to know what he should do with the rest of his life. Since we lived under the same roof, I heard him pacing the floor many nights and prayed for him to be comforted.
Then he got his answer and for the second time, married a wonderful woman. I am so thankful that the Lord directed him to Bobbye. She has truly blessed our family. She brought back the happiness in his life. I LOVE my Dad. He can fix anything...He knows everything...He loves the Lord...He loves his family...He honors his Priesthood...He works hard...He has a great sense of humor...He was crazy enough to pack nine children in a station wagon and drive from Ohio to Idaho almost non-stop many times when we were kids...(that still boggles my mind)...He is one of the greatest men I know. Thank you Dad...You are my hero!