Saturday, November 8, 2008

I Love You, Dad

Yesterday my son casually said, as he does each day, “love you, Mom” as he was walking out the door. As usual, I smiled as I said back to him, “I love you, too”. Although I have heard the phrase hundreds of times before and know it is usually said out of habit and not heart felt sentiment, I will never tire of hearing it.

Isn’t it amazing how much changes with each generation? Growing up, we never heard the words “I love you”. We never hugged. We certainly would not cuddle up together on the couch to watch TV or read a book. Your children did, however, know we were loved. We saw it in the way you worked hard each day, without complaint, to provide for your family. The way you reminded us over and over to “be careful”. The way you looked at us and the sacrifices you made for us.

We did not have long heart felt conversations about how one should lead their life. Yet, words were not necessary. You led by example. By the way you interacted with others. You showed equal amounts of respect to the banker, the preacher and the school custodian. The time, unknowing to you, I saw you empty your wallet and quietly place the contents in the single mother’s purse.

Do I feel as though I missed out on something? Do I wish you would have told us you loved us, talked to us more? No. I feel blessed to have been able to grow up knowing I was loved, having someone quietly lead me into adulthood. But I do feel as though you have missed out on something. I want you to experience how it feels to have someone say those words to you. I want you to hear it without feeling the need to reciprocate, without fanfare or celebration. I want to share with you the joy one simple phrase can bring. I love you, Dad

No comments: