There’s not a single day that goes by that I don’t think about and miss my dad. (He passed away 5 years ago suddenly and unexpectedly.)
(I’ve blogged about my dad here, here, and here.)
It’s my new tradition to pay a special and well-deserved Tribute to My Dad on Father’s Day.
Maybe it’s strange, but when the stores put the Father’s Day greeting cards on display, I still look through a few of them and get a lump in my throat.
My mom and I will be visiting him at the cemetery, which is always difficult for me.
Instead of drowning in sorrow, I choose to celebrate his life because although even remembering the happy memories brings me to tears, I’d rather be inspired by the amazing life that he lived instead of dwelling on life being unfair.
No, my father wasn’t perfect. He was human. But he truly continues to be the biggest source of inspiration for me. Through his unconditional love, ability to see the humour in any situation, and his calming presence, he set the bar extraordinarily high.
He was the best listener. He wouldn’t cut you off, he would provide sound advice when you needed it, and he always put my heart at ease, even when I was going through what I thought was ‘the end of the world’ when I was a teenager and suffering my first heartbreak.
I find, to my dismay, that a lot of people don’t really listen. They rush, use the excuse that they’re “too busy”, or they brush off concerns because you’re the only person who feels the way you do. Even in a professional environment, it’s alarming how even after seconds of the boss saying something, a co-worker will ask a question that the boss literally just explained. Haha, and then there are the people who talk over your voice, and you wonder if they just love listening to themselves.
Listening skills are a lost art.
My dad, though, would let you talk for hours to get something off your chest. But what was even better was that he listened not just with his ears, but with his heart. It didn’t just go through one ear and out the other. He hung onto everything I said because he valued my opinion.
He also loved to talk, and when he seized the opportunity, he could talk for hours to anyone, anywhere. I used to joke that he could have a conversation with a doorknob!
I always admired his social skills – he was charming! (The interesting thing is that even though he wasn’t a doctor or security guard, strangers often would mistake him for working in those two professions, and it’s not like he was talking about medical or security issues. It was just the way he carried himself, I guess.)
It was also awkward when strangers (women and men) used to tell me that my dad is very handsome out of the blue. I would just smile, but then I’d keep my hawk eyes on the women in case they tried anything! Haha, I didn’t have anything to worry about. My father was a loyal husband to my mom and a very devoted father.
To prepare for this post, I looked through some old albums at my mom’s. There were lots of great photographs to choose from, but I picked a few to share with you.
They’re not listed in perfect chronological order, but they go from when he was a bachelor to when he got married to after marriage.
The photos are all from the 1950s and 1960s.
This post contains a little glimpse into what my dad was like before he had me and my brother. And as long as I blog for Swatch And Learn, I plan to pay a special Father’s Day Tribute to him every single Father’s Day.