I’m showing my age here, but does anybody remember a mind-bogglingly (is that a word?) fascinating band called Loverboy? They had a song called “Working for the Weekend” back in the eighties, I think.
Anyhoo, that song earwormed its way into my head this week as I sat as my desk (dayjob desk) thinking “it’ll be over soon, it’ll be over soon, it’ll be over soon”.
By the way, clicking my heels as I repeated that mantra did nothing. Massive disappointment.
Back to the point. I had a glaringly obvious realization this week that I am doing precisely that: working for the weekend. And it made me start thinking about why my perspective changed, because I used to like my job.
My daddy passed away almost three years ago. He was our rock. He taught us everything we know about earning what we want through hard work.
He was an aluminum siding man, working long hours outdoors no matter the weather. He worked all of the time. And, he never complained.
He was an incredible story-teller. We would gather around him, in the floor of the living-room, while he played his guitar for us. Mom would bring a huge Tupperware bowl of popcorn and cups of Kool-aid to us. He would sing a little, talk a little, sing a little more.
That sums up how I knew my daddy, until he passed.
Like him, I’m an avid reader, so I got his books. His many, many, many books. To say he loved history is an understatement. He studied history. He underscored, high-lighted, cross-referenced, notated. I have spiral notebooks full of things he’d found interesting, written in his neat script.
He was brilliant.
But I didn’t know that about him. I had no idea he was so passionate about something, other than being our daddy.
He never got to visit the places he studied up on, wrote about. He was only there in his beloved books, his mind leaving the confines of our tiny crowded home to take him on journeys to battlefields and historic buildings. I imagine he thought about those things as he climbed ladders, hammered nails, and burnt up in the sun or got soaked by rain.
On his last good day, he talked to us of regrets. He didn’t want us to have any. He wanted us to chase our dreams, fulfill what we felt we were put here for.
He wanted us to live, fully and abundantly. He was proud of the adults we had become.
Yeah, he had a huge hand in that. Mega huge.
My life changed after my daddy passed away. His words changed me. His books and his writings changed me. I cried as I perused his notes, laying my hands on pages of books he’d worn thin.
That’s when I became dissatisfied with my path. Not with my life, just with my path. It made me really think about where I was going. I was at the half-way point of my journey here, so I made a conscious decision to change direction.
It was the best decision I’ve ever made. Daddy really did know best.
He would’ve turned 79 this week. I suppose that’s why my mind has lingered here all week. His quiet influence still plays a role in my life, gently urging me to continue on, whispering encouragement to me.
I’m crying now, missing my daddy. I have his picture beside my desk, a constant reminder of how much I’m loved. He was pretty darn awesome.
Happy Birthday, Daddy. I love you.