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Seeing My Father In Me

By on June 17th, 2012 in News Comments Off
father-and-child-together_large_huge

Today is Father’s Day. For some it’s a time to buy their dad a present, for some a time to take their dad out for dinner, while others (like myself) it’s a time to remember and honor their father’s memory.

My Dad was a member of what Tom Brokaw called The Greatest Generation, a retired army veteran who fought in the South Pacific in World War II. I’m proud that he was one of those that help defend this country during one of America’s darkest hours.

However, Father’s Day is so much more than what a father did for a career. It’s about the moments shared with children. It’s about the little things they did. The laughs, the embraces, the smiles; Daddy had away of just making people feel right at home. And Father’s day is about the life that makes that person special.

Parents are the earliest and most influential examples to children of what it means to be an adult. When I was a boy, I was sometimes embarrassed by my Dad’s struggles with alcohol. It wasn’t till years later that I came to understand some of the compelling forces that probably contributed to his addiction.

He was the ninth of 13 children who lost his mother at age 3 and his father at 16. He joined the army at 17 and later fought in WWII . Those terrible combat scenes haunted him till the day he died. His handicap though didn’t stop him from loving his children.

I remember when I was trying to earn money with a paper route, that I came home one day from school and he had bought me a brand new bike. Then on Sunday morning, he got up before dawn and went with me to help deliver my newspapers.

That bicycle was a special memory because he never had much to share in the way of material things. Nevertheless I learned from him that more than material things, love is expressed through time and sacrifice. That is a lesson as a Dad, I’ve tried to practice with my own sons.

I remember losing a football game once and it was Dad that I looked to for consolation. That was another lesson I remembered later in life as I followed my boys through little league and high school sports. Every practice, every game I was doing for my boys what I had expected of my Dad.

Children look up to their fathers for many things. Daughters and sons alike thrive on the approval they wish to receive from their father. You might see athletes on TV saying “Hi Mom” to the camera but don’t be fooled, they may want mom’s attention but it’s dad’s approval they seek.

I realize that now and so much more. There’s nothing like being able to look at life through the prism of experience. As I have gotten older that prism has allowed me to see more of my father in me than I ever thought to be.

Country music song writer Paul Overstreet put it this way:

“I’m seeing my father in me
I guess that’s the way it’s meant to be
And I find I’m more and more like him each day

I notice I walk the way he walked
I notice I talk the way he talked
I’m starting to see my father in me

And I’m happy to see my father in me”

Thanks Dad and …

Happy Father’



Comments: 14.

Acid Reign

When I was young, I particularly liked the times when he…

…..went outside to smoke a cigarette, or fire up the BBQ pit. In those times, he’d be relaxed, not rushed and you’d get some of his best wisdom. Even as an adult, I really enjoyed the times we’d get together and cook out. We’d trade tips and ideas, discuss current events, and generally solve all of the world’s problems.

…..I think I kind of rained on my family’s parade today. I suspect the idea was to take me to some crowded restaurant for lunch. Instead, I was up early making gumbo, generally following the recipe from our friends at LSU. I’ve been able to beg off going out, because I’ve got a pot simmering on the stove! It’s gonna be pretty good, I think! Yesterday, I made chicken stock from my old first edition Commander’s Palace cookbook to use in the gumbo today, and when I strained the pound of chicken out of the stock, I used it to make some tasty chicken salad.

‘……Drowning in cool elixir.’
by Acid Reign on Jun 17, 2012 | 11:36 AM

aubtigerman

Your making me hungary Acid.

And I suspect one of the things your kids will remember about you is the great cook you are and how you loved to prepare special meals for them.

AubTigerman
“The reason you come to Auburn is because of Auburn people.This is a special place, from the coaches all the way to the fans” – Andrew McCain OT
by AubTigerman on Jun 17, 2012 | 11:48 AM up

Acid Reign

They’ve gotten some treats..

…..this weekend! We hit the farmer’s market earlier, and I tend to go crazy there. We’ve had fried okra, fresh spinach, lightly sauteed squash, green plums, and of course heaping plates of tomato and cucumber slices.

‘……Drowning in cool elixir.’
by Acid Reign on Jun 17, 2012 | 12:02 PM up

Tiger on the mountain

 

If you headed to PepperMill Place—that farmer’s market is AWESOME!!! We usually plan trips home so that one Saturday, we can head to the farmer’s market. It’s that good people!!

“We see the door; we’re here to knock it down”-Cam Newton
by Tiger on the mountain on Jun 18, 2012 | 9:12 AM up

Acid Reign

Did the old one…

….on Findley in north Birmingham. Reason? Green plums. There’s about a two week window in June to get them, and most outlets don’t carry them.

‘……Drowning in cool elixir.’
by Acid Reign on Jun 18, 2012 | 4:24 PM up

Tiger on the mountain

 

ooohhhh!!! Green Plums!!! Yes, completely worth it! :))

Man, I miss the awesome produce! Just finished up the last two peaches from our trip home. Still have blueberries…..

“We see the door; we’re here to knock it down”-Cam Newton
by Tiger on the mountain on Jun 19, 2012 | 8:46 AM up

Happy Fathers Day to my 2nd Dad

I Read your article out loud to my three little ones tonight and they loved it! They all thought it was “really special” and wanted me to let you know! I told them I would pass along the message! Happy fathers day to you and we love ya!

by wareagle3020 on Jun 17, 2012 | 7:00 PM

aubtigerman

Thanks a bunch to my godson.

Tell the kids I love them too. Hope y’all have a good trip to Texas to see your Dad.

AubTigerman
“The reason you come to Auburn is because of Auburn people.This is a special place, from the coaches all the way to the fans” – Andrew McCain OT
by AubTigerman on Jun 17, 2012 | 7:40 PM up

Col.Angus

Great Article ATM

Fathers day is my favorite day after Christmas, because its a great reminder to me about what is important in life and it also is a strong reminder of how much I love my sons, as well as how much I love and emulate my own father. As I’ve grown older I’ve watched my father become a human being. He is no longer the war hero, the family protector, and the icon of my youth. He is more…..so much more.

At 79 years of age, his is in relatively good health, but frail and vulnerable all the same. It is now that I see him as just a man, albeit a man who did his duty for his country and his family. A man that has weakeness and insecurites and fears but he did not let those things get in the way of being a dependable and secrurity providing father. He was a success at work, but not a big wig executive that pulled down big money.

He made sure to make time for the family and for me, supporting me in all my athletic endeavors and participating in the administration at the local youth sports organinzation.

Its tough being a father nowadays, but I think its always been tough. Holding down a job and supporting a family is always a chore and its much too easy after a hard days work to come home and try to regroup until you punch back in the next monring. Thats why NOW I especially appreciate all the times my day played catch with me, or took me camping or fishing or any number of things he did, that took away from his personal time. I realize now that he didn’t do that because he liked doing it, so much as he loved me and wanted to spend that time with me.

I know that because I feel that way about my own sons, and it is where I emulate my father the most. I now try and return that love my father showed to me by spending as much time with him as I can, and reminding him that I remember and appreciate what he did. He’ll shrug it off, just as I would, because that is also what he taught me….but I know he is proud, because I am a father just like he was.

Thanks Dad, I love you!!

‘I love the smell of Auburn in the autumn…..it smells like….victory.’
by Col.Angus on Jun 17, 2012 | 9:29 PM

 
PineMtTiger

My dad was the greatest man I ever knew.

He taught me so much about life and no matter how much time he had to spend in his small business he always made time for his children. My greatest memories are hunting and especially fishing with him. I miss him so much. Today I spend time with my boy in the woods just like he did with me. Good post P.W.!

by PineMtTiger on Jun 18, 2012 | 2:04 AM

wde1988

Great stories…

And I totally agree with the sentiment. Unfortunately my father died when I was seven. So it is a particularly hard day for me and has been my entire life. Having kids of my own now I get to enjoy the day somewhat… but its still something that I sometimes have to pause and reflect on.

But yesterday was a good day!

In tribute to my dad, I think he would have been all those things you all mentioned. I try not to make him too much of a hero but its hard to do. In the eyes of a kid – he was larger than life. He was a steel mill worker in Birmingham in the early 70’s and we lived in Gardendale. And yes, I do appreciate what he did for me and my brother. The sacrifice he gave for us… to make our home better. To make our lot in life better.

I hope my children appreciate these things in the years to come if the good Lord see’s fit to leave me here for them. But being a dad is a funny thing. I think its something you have to observe. And considering that I didn’t have that… I sometimes feel inadequate for the task. I guess it could be different if I came from a family where the dad is oppressive. Still, it is always my hope that I can be the father that my dad never got to be…

War Eagle Dad!

“Negative? Hell’s bells. I can out drink anyone in the kool-aide department. But I also like to be realistic. Don’t you?”
by wde1988 on Jun 18, 2012 | 7:55 AM

Excellent job ATM.

This really made you look at yourself and the photo at the top symbolizes so much about life & being a father.

by thewholekittenkaboodle on Jun 18, 2012 | 8:40 AM

War Eagle Atlanta

Nice,

Paul. Just nice.

‘Some of my best friends are women.’
by War Eagle Atlanta on Jun 18, 2012 | 9:11 AM

Tiger on the mountain

Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s out there.

Pops of ToTM rocks!!! But he knows that already. Mr. ToTM is a really awesome Dad and Little ToTM and soon-to-be Littler ToTM are two lucky lucky kids :)

“We see the door; we’re here to knock it down”-Cam Newton
by Tiger on the mountain on Jun 18, 2012 | 9:16 AM


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