Saturday, May 10, 2008

My Dad

I was adopted by my "father" when I was six months old which lasted about two years until my mother divorced him. I also remember getting presents from him for a number of years then I looked him up when I was thirteen, there was such a chill in the air.
I meet my biological father when I was twenty-four, to not only find him an alcoholic, but an idiot as well. Now that I'm forty-eight, we have only gotten together few times, yet, we don't actually feel that parent-child click, if you know what I MEAN.
When I was five, my mother met Charlie, they dated for years and years. He was there almost evenings. They finally married when I was 13, yet he was always around anyway.
He taught me how to fish, fix cars and do plumbing. He worked in a factory as a maintenance foreman. I remember as a kid, they would have to order special tools to work on the machinery at his factory, he would sneak it home so as to share it with me. Some of the tools were three foot long! Charlie was my "Dad". There were so many things he showed me growing up. Charlie taught me how to shuck corn, cut grass the right way, make a bed so tight a quarter would bounce off it ( if the quarter bounced I got to keep it!)
We were really quite poor growing up, we didn't always have running water or an inside bathroom. I specifically remember though that Charlie would bring one eight pack of bottle pop to the house each week. There were enough pops so that each of us could have two.
He bought a pogo stick for me and made stilts for me to walk on. We had a little cement patio outside the back door and he and I would play on both for more than an hour a night. When I got too big for the stilts ( I was a very tall young woman at the age of ten) he made me a taller pair.
Charlie is getting up there in age, and he and my mother divorced many, many years ago.
We still talk though. He is still my Dad. He lives a couple of states away, when possible I'm able to go see him.
It broke my heart when this little old man, greyed thinned hair, came bent towards me at church. Yes, he was married before and had children with his ex-wife (who he remarried after mom and him divorced), Yet he was still is the man who my dad is. I never called him Dad. I always called him Charlie.
I always minded him as well. In the whole time I was growing up, Charlie never laid a hand on me. If he were displeased all he had to do was to clear his throat and I was on the run. I remember of two times he actually raised his voice to me, I also felt the heat from his words, buddy I chopped to! I also deserved much more those times than a raised voice.
There have been a ton of things he's taught me over the years. Not only did he teach me how to be a mechanic, a farmer, a housekeeper,and how to can foods. He taught me how to be a good person, how to love without the link of bloodlines, he showed me how to love God with grace and faith and be a good christian. He taught me how a real Dad acts, how they love and behave. Charlie showed me how to be a good person, a good parent, and a good child.
Charlie was and is a good MAN. I remember one time I was in the emergency room. I was having complications from a hysterectomy. He sat there tears quietly coming down his face, holding my hand and telling me about God. I hadn't taken the Lord into my heart and he pleaded with me. I don't ever remember him doing that again.
As a single parent I relied on my mother and Charlie to watch my children while I worked. He gladly watched "HIS grand babies". He taught them many of the lessons he taught me as a child. There were things they got from him as well,I didn't. Charlie taught my kids to tie their shoes, how to comb their hair before school and he taught them how to pray. I love my dad so much I named my first son after him. He cried that day as well.
To this day he will fight you over his grand kids, all of them.

He showed me LOVE.

I just wanted to share some of the things that one person can do. In spite of all the things that have happened in my life, I really feel like the luckiest person in the world. I was biologically created by a donor, I was adopted on paper, then I was really adopted, by the best Dad in the world.

1 comment:

Molly Daniels said...

Reminds me of what D's parents did for Liz, Derek, Jamie, and Josh!

I love that line, " love w/o bloodlines". Can I quote you?