If dads want to be better dads, they ought to take a few cues from mine. He set the bar for Best Dad Ever. Let me tell you why.
Our relationship was was one of true connection. It was built on playing hard, laughing all the time, and loving…yeah, to infinity. I’m very lucky, I know. And while he passed way too soon, I know that we had more experiences, love, and togetherness, than most get in a lifetime.
Best dad ever.
As a daddy’s girl, it was Dad’s Day all of the time. Like most of you, I claim that mine was “THE BEST DAD EVER”. He was Eddie and he was one of my best pals. Being one of four kids close in age, we all vied for time with him. But as my siblings would attest, I took after him the most. I have his freckly coloring. I have his goofy playfulness. I have his creativity and curiosity.
There are so many things about Eddie that I recall. And when I think of them, I realize how much they all involved loads of honest to goodness quality time together. Even as a busy teenager, there was always daddy/daughter time.
I remember once when my Mom made a cherry pie. It was still warm when Dad and I grabbed a single fork, found a secret spot, and shared the whole thing. Our stomach aches were no comparison to the trouble we got in when Mom came home. I think we both were grounded! But we also laughed about it for years to come.
I remember Dad in the summer. In the pool. Playing games. Tossing us around and and laughing so hard I thought I’d pass-out. “One more time Daddy!” comes to mind.
I remember him at the grill making endless hotdogs for all of our friends all summer long. I remember him leaning over the sink polishing off a rack of just-off-the-grill ribs. I remember the annual tomato garden and Dad eating them like apples…also leaning over the sink.
I remember his great Donald Duck impression. He’d get real close to your ear, and in that horsey-voiced ducky kinda way say, “What’s a-matter with you?” I think his playful sense gave me some of my creativity and wonderment.
I remember the funny words that he’d make up, on the spur of the moment, that would inevitably become family terminology. I remember his silly Yiddish words that made us all laugh. I remember his friends nicknaming him “Friendly Eddie.” He shared his silliness with everyone he came across, and it makes me smile when I find myself doing the same.
I remember Eddie, the dancer. Eddie the singer. Eddie dancing and singing all around the house. And all of us rolling our eyes and laughing at AND with him. He shared this talent with me except I’m not nearly as good at either.
I remember him fixing things all the time. Turning trash into treasures at his über-organized garage bench. The wrenches hanging. The hammer drawer. The saw drawer. The tape drawer. The glue drawer. The little nut, bolt, screw and nail drawers. And his transistor radio hanging from a hook. He was a handy-dandy fix-it kinda guy, and if you couldn’t find him, most likely he was roaming the isles at the neighborhood hardware store.
Dads. They play like kids, give advice like friends, and protect like bodyguards.
I remember all the times I called my parent’s house. When Dad answered he’d put me through the same silly list of questions regarding “who was calling…”. After three or four, he’d say, “Oh, I know you! You used to come over and eat fried chicken with me every Friday.” This was not true. And it made absolutely no sense. But it made me laugh every single time he said it.
I remember Dad’s smile, his kindness, his hard work, and his hard play. I remember his constant encouragement of all my endeavors. Good and not so good. He played a big part in my entrepreneurial sense of achievement, and I believe he’s a big reason why I am where I am in my life today.
Sometimes, he visits me in my dreams and I can feel his warm hug when I wake up. And even though he’s been gone for many years, the love and togetherness remains today. And will forever.
Happy Father’s Day!
On Father’s Day our whole family would go to the park and my mom would cook a big breakfast on one of the park grills while we all played. In honor of Eddie’s spirit, on this Sunday, I’ll be whipping up a that same breakfast. And before we eat, I will ask exactly what Dad used to ask. “This is a breakfast fit for ………..?” And rather than four monkeys (that’s what he called us) shouting, “A King Daddy”, my husband will happily reply, “A King Honey”.
Happy Dad’s Day to all the men in our lives. Past and present. We you!
In the comments section below, tell us one of your “I remembers” with your dad. We’d love to hear your stories!