There was a time that I didn’t understand the words you never spoke, the hugs that were seldom felt and the encouragement that was given in soft-spoken short sentences. You always told me that it was up to me to make myself happy and that I needed to find my own path in life.
You never threw a baseball with me or took me to the fishing hole. Yet you passed on the words of wisdom that fathers give to their sons to prepare them for the world they must face alone, and yes I came to resent you for that. You talked about believing in dreams and using my imagination. I didn’t know that your words held a much greater value than throwing a ball and that when the time came for me to make my way in life your words would echo in my mind. I can always hear your soft-spoken voice guiding my steps.
I know now that you were all the man you ever needed to be. I know that your silence was filled with your own fears. I know now that those soft-spoken words that I needed to hear were spoken to you as well. I know now that there never was a baseball or a fishing hole in your life.
I know now that you worked the fields when you were a kid and never went past the third grade in school. When you were older you took a winter job in the city so our table was never bare. I know that you loved Mom, a love that lasted your whole life. She told me how much you loved me and how hard it was for you to find the right words.
There was a time I didn’t understand but now I can only hope to be half the man that you were. Now I know that you were all the man you needed to be.
Point Of View: It seems that we always expected more from our parents than they gave us and it always seemed to come to us later in life that they gave all they had to give. My dad’s words turned out to be the roadmap that I used on my life journey. We must be careful in life not to give our children what we feel we didn’t get and remember the things they did give us that live on within us every day. Dad, I am sorry. I didn’t know then that you gave me all you had to give.