Nov 2018 12

 

“No, they’re not neighbours. They’re people who have been family to me the last years.”

We had a 90th birthday party for my father on the weekend. And about 25 people (and 1 dog) showed up. When an old friend of his who attended asked my dad if all the people were local neighbours, he said the above.

Which was nice to think about. My father has certainly endeared himself to many people throughout the years. He’s progressive thinking, young-minded, and loves to laugh and make people laugh. Those of you who know me know if you’re in my life – at some point you’re going to meet my father.

Those of you who know me (hello 3 readers) also know that I have had a rocky few years with him. And certainly my relationship with him has changed since my mother died eight years ago. He’s a frustrating, stubborn, and sometimes very selfish person. Yes, I’m a bit like him, so shut up. I have idolized him, hated him, blamed him, and fiercely loved him. Sometimes all within the same week.

It’s easy to take him for granted cause he looks and moves like he’s only 70 years old, but I’m beginning to realize that I need to come to terms with him as an adult, and just accept that he did the best he could as a father, and husband. We can’t go back.

At his age. And my advancing age, we are learning to deal with each other as people.
Hence, a living celebration of an ongoing, and very interesting, life.

He drank a bit of rum (very rare these days). He told some jokes. He made a toast. And he was one of the last people standing at the end of the night when he got a lift home with a large slab of birthday cake in tow.

I love the man. And he just happens to be my father.

My niece, eleven years old, was looking checked-out at one point and I said to her quietly – “I know you’re kind of bored. This may seem hard to believe right now, but someday you’ll look back at this night and remember it well. And it will make us happy. You’ll never forget it for the rest of your life. And you’ll never forget him. And I’m glad you’re here.”

I meant it. But I was saying it to myself, too.

 

 

 

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