Sunday, July 24, 2011

Ten Things You Didn't Know: A Gift for My Dad

With my Dad's 68th birthday approaching at the end of the month, I was debating on buying him yet another war book or yet another Lobster-Gram. With the already-done gifts of clothes, restaurant gift certificates, and other typical dad-gifts,  and knowing that at 68 he has plenty of money to buy all the clothes, books, movies, he wants. He doesn't go out much these days, anyway. I struggled to come up with something that he would enjoy and yet something that he simply could not get for himself. The result was a personal creation of a list of ten things I have learned from him.

I made it into a mini-book and used only materials I had on hand, because A) I am broke untilthe school year starts, B) it was a summer task to use only what I have for all my scrapbooking projects.

This book was inspired in part by a blog post made by a friend of mine where she losted out a blog to her mom {56 Things I Love About You} and in part from the 30-day Photo Challenge from facebook. Day 24 called for a photo of "something I wish I could change" and that would be leaving DC the way I did, 16 years ago. I don't know if my dad ever thinks about that year and I don't know if he knows that I regret hurting him so much with my decision to move back to Massachusetts. 13 years away from the east coast and 2400 miles has taken a toll on my relationship with my Dad, and while we are close today, he seems so remote and so sad when we talk. I feel like I am losing him every day and I wanted him to know these things that I have learned from him whether or not he meant to teach me these lessons. I hope the sentimental gift goes a lot farther than a gift box with a few shirts.

1) You taught me to ask for help.

2. You instilled in me competitveness and a love for sports.

3. You taught me never to start smoking which led to a lifetime of healthy choices.

4. From you I gained an appreciation for the beauty of the dynamic ocean.

5. It meant the world to me that you  travelled to Cohasset for Isabella's baptism and that you came to Arizona to meet your first two grandchildren.

6. {gulp. The big "apology"} I learned in life that there are tough decisions to make and that it is normal to regret those decisions down the road. The choices that are hardest to make are the ones we learn from the most. I regret leaving DC in such a terrible fashion, but I cannot regret leaving because of the path my life has taken since then.

7. I learned that the toughest hands are often the onjes we deal ourselves.

8. You taught me that there is more to a lobster than claws and a tail.

9. You were right. You once told me that yo did not want me to go to Arizona for college because you knew I would fall in love with the climate and meet a guy and stay here forever.  I told you that there was no weather or man that could keep me away from the east coast. Well, I could do without the climate, but the guy was a keeper.

10. I learned from you that broken hearts can be repaired. You taught me to think about what you are saying to those you love.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

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