I was much older when my grandmother confided in me that during those trying times in the late 80s and early 90s my father would often go without eating lunch at work every day of the week in order to have money to spend on Jeffrey and me when we went to visit each weekend. As a child, I loved trips to my father's house for a few reasons. Weekends at Daddy's meant hours spent playing with my cousins who lived next door. It meant eating hamburgers and tea cakes at Grandma's and sitting out under the shade tree at Muffy's. But, I think what might have been most important to me at least for a while as a naive and pretty much spoiled pre-pubescent boy was that it meant on our weekly Walmart trip, Daddy would buy me whatever I put in the shopping basket. It never was much, mind you; usually just a package of pens or markers or a Hot Wheels car. I never asked for outlandish things as a child. But knowing now how much my father gave of himself to be able to give me those things makes them mean so much more. And makes me feel a little guilty for not appreciating them as the love tokens they were.
I won't gush too much about Daddy today. This blog's full of Daddy Worship posts, as are my writer's notebooks, as I'm sure will be the pages of my future volumes of poetry. I only hope I can be half as hardworking and self-sacrificing as my father is when I grow up. My daddy's a good man. My daddy can beat up your daddy.
Happy Father's Day.