My hunka hunka said I should blog about my dad. I thought I would have a hard time trying to put my thoughts into words, but I gave it my best.
My dad enjoys telling the story of when I was born. It was 3:54 am on a Monday morning. He wasn’t allowed in the delivery room and had fallen asleep. When the nurse came out to tell him I was a little girl, he tripped over the chair with excitement. He was able to hold me right before they even cleaned me. My dad tells me that story with pride.
Every year on my birthday my dad calls me at 3:54 am to give me the rundown of how I entered the world as a blonde hair, blue-eyed baby girl, and became the apple of his eye.
My dad and I were quite a team. My mom, God love her, was always taking care of my brothers and tending to her parents, as needed. She worked tirelessly.
Daddy worked as a heavy machine operator during the day and would farm during the night. In between he was tending to me while my grandmother helped.
Growing up in my house never created any resentment of my mom not being there. Taking care of your family is what you are supposed to do. I respected it and understood it.
My dad was raised in a tough country family. He was never told the words, “I love you.” As I growing up, I would say it and his response would be, “OK.”
As I grew into my teens, my mom became more active in her parents’ well-being. She would get up early and walk to their house. My dad would wake me for school and head out for his day of work. My dad fixed me breakfast…like a half hour before he woke me up. Corn flakes. When they sit for about a half hour, they become terribly soggy. I never complained, but let me tell you…I haven’t eaten a bowl of corn flakes since those days.
One thing I have never done to this day is hit the snooze button. When my dad would wake me for school, he was out the door. It was up to me get myself ready and out to the bus on time. As soon as my alarm clock goes off today, I turn it off and quickly get out of bed.
Another thing my dad taught me is to always be prepared for the next day. He would make sure I had my school clothes ready before I went to bed so I would be prepared. As I write this today, you can rest assure my work clothes for tomorrow are already hanging on the back of my bathroom door. I get anxiety if I don’t have them ready for the next day…something else my dad instilled in me. Haha
Dad and I are diehard UK fans. That’s all we have in Kentucky. I would pace the floor when a game was on and he would yell. To this day we still watch the games, he calls me after each game to discuss play by play. March madness is our favorite time of the year. There are times he calls me at midnight to discuss a game. Those are good times!
As I became an adult, life took many turns. My dad went from responding to my “I love yous” with “OK” to “Daddy loves you.” Whoa..that’s big for him.
I called my mom every day on my way home from work before dementia stole her mind. Once dementia took over, it was crazy how fast my dad stepped right into her shoes. Now this man cannot hear thunder but he makes sure the daily phone call still takes place. He calls me every day without fail.
Daddy and I became so much closer when Moma’s dementia started and even more so now that God has called her home. It’s crazy how much has evolved in how we end our phone calls. He has gone from, “OK” to “Daddy loves you” to “Micki, I love you very much.”
I cook a month’s worth of food for him at a time. I put in individual servings and freeze for him. He has a standing order of certain items. He doesn’t hesitate the let me know when he wants something. When you’re 85, you have earned that right.
Daddy sure loves my Gracie Mae, and she feels the same for him. He gets more excited to see her than he does me. I always laugh that he only gets happy when I visit because I’m bringing Gracie Mae. I like to joke to tell him how rotten she is just so he gets more kisses. She truly brings so much joy to his life. Gracie Mae always brings a smile to his face.
I can tell on his phone calls what kind of day he has had by the tone of his voice. He longs to see my sweet Moma again. My mom was buried on their 54th wedding anniversary. I’ll never forget the morning of her funeral my dad called. He wanted to know why God hasn’t called him home yet. I just remind him that God isn’t ready for him yet. As hard as it is for him to grasp reality, he knows it is all in God’s time.
I have a certain ringtone set for my dad. He knows he can call me at anytime, and he does. I never reject his call. Who knows when it will be the last, or he may really need me. Sometimes he will call me multiple times in an hour’s time. Sometimes he will call me late in the night to say he just wanted to hear my voice one last time before he goes to bed.
When God calls me home, I want to face Him eye to eye and know that I did my best as a daughter. I have fed, clothed, bathed, and everything else for both my parents in a time of need. I know they did that for me when they brought me into this world so it is the least I can do to take care of them when they go out of this world.
There are many attributes I got from my dad. I’m the only one who is left-handed like him. I got his blonde hair and blue eyes. I also got his temper, but worse. I am strong-willed, and a tad stubborn. I also learned how nothing should ever be given. If you didn’t earn it, you don’t deserve it. If you can’t afford it, you don’t need it. I feel I have great work ethic, sometimes to a fault.
to say I’m a Daddy’s girl is not touching the surface of how much of a Daddy’s girl I truly am. When God looked down from Heaven and picked my dad to be the father of me, I am eternally blessed. I don’t know how I got so lucky to have a daddy such as mine, but I’m going to keep him as long as I can. Well, as long as God will allow me to have him.
Peace out, trout!