"Fire is motion / Work is repetition / This is my document / We are all all we've done / We are all all we've done / We are all all we've done / We are all all defenses."

- Cap'N Jazz, "Oh Messy Life," Analphabetapolothology

Sunday, June 21, 2009

lesson from my father #88: Love.

... That was as far as we got before we arrived in San Jose. I would like to hear more about Dad's life growing up and learning more about the family, which still remains a mystery. How did he meet Mom? How did he know, when did he know, that he loved her?

My cousin Sam told me his dad, my Uncle Danny, would wait for his mom after class every day at BYU. They were students and didn't have a lot of money, and the popular thing to eat on campus were these 15 cent hamburgers, because they were so cheap. But, they would always sell out really fast, and my Aunt Pearl, Sam's mom, had one of the later classes. So my Uncle Danny would go and save her a place in line. He won her over one 15 cent hamburger at a time.

Uncle Tony, Jocelyn explained at the funeral, met Aunt Evelyn when they both worked for China Airlines. He stood outside the terminal waiting for her every day, with an umbrella so she wouldn't get wet when it rained (and it rains a lot there). He did this for 7 months before she finally agreed to go out with him.

I love these stories about my uncles because it makes me nostalgic for the kind of love that is hard-earned and a long time coming, a dedicated, patient love. Hearing these courtship stories doesn't surprise me at all, knowing the kind of supportive, devoted husbands and fathers my uncles are, but they remind me that romance and love aren't make believe or reserved solely for the movies, that extraordinary deeds are performed by extraordinary gentelemen every day, and that I'm just so lucky to have such men in my life as uncles, as a father. They remind me that love isn't so much about the grand, dramatic gestures, but in the quiet dedication it takes to love someone so powerfully every day – the love it takes to be there every day with an umbrella when it rains, or the 30 cents when you haven't got a dime for yourself – and never lessen or waiver in knowing that you would be happy doing this every day for this person because it brings them happiness. Selfless, constant Love.

...As my dad pulled up to the curb to drop me off as he always does while he goes to look for parking, he tells me, as he always has, that the only thing he wants is "for [me] to be happy." My dad has never been controlling or even overbearingly curious, like my mom. He has been supportive of my decisions without injecting too much of his own opinion. As with my college decision, my decision on which high school to go to, and my career aspirations, so with my love life; Dad was there to offer support, but never judge. He just wants me to be happy.

Even though I'd heard it a million times before, this time I smiled, gripped his hand, and kissed him on the cheek. These last few weeks have been incredibly hard for my family, but, at the same time, it has made me remember we have so much to be grateful for. There is so much beauty, so much life, and so much love in the world, it's hard to remain sad for very long before you're overwhelmed with gratitude.


to all the fathers and the uncles, and especially to my own,
happy father's day.

with so much love,

1 comment:

The Last Unicorn said...

Hey, Lady: Your blog has meant a lot to me lately.

Truly sorry for your loss. Have fun adventuring.

Thanks for reminding me how important it is to be overwhelmed with gratitude.