There was once a boy who was born in 1935 in Forest Hills, New York and went on many fun adventures. In 1950, he started his own business in 1958 which he ran for 56 years! He also married the most beautiful woman in every sense of the way. He and his wife had a daughter in 1973, their one and only — their treasure.
How this man adored his daughter. He was there for her, attended every event, and made many “teachable” moments. At the time, his one and only didn’t realize how important these lessons would be, but he would say, “Just you wait, it will all make sense one day.”
His one and only grew up, earned her Master’s degree, married the most wonderful man on earth, and had a handsome baby boy. Now, his one and only had given birth and that was his crowning achievement: the proudest grandfather imaginable.
A year later, he had to have triple bypass surgery. He looked at his surgeon and said, “Doc, I’m not a greedy man, just give me some more time so that my grandson will remember me, get me to when he’s at least 5 or 6 years old.” His surgeon looked at him with a smile and said, “I’ll make sure to give you more than that.” Well, he had 10 more wonderful years! Years filled with many great lessons, teachable moments, hugs and kisses.
This man was my father. My dad recently passed away, peaceful as could be. The day after his death, I was driving and listening to music I knew he loved. Tears were streaming down my face but I shockingly realized I was actually smiling at the same time – yes, smiling! That’s when it all came full circle. Everything he every taught me, showed me, and told me about culminated in that powerful moment, that smile. His gift to me. It was his guidance and parenting that led me to that smile.
Because of him, I’m a happy, responsible, and confident wife and mother…just what he had always wanted for me. Thank you Dad for teaching me how to become the person I have become today. Thank you for your guidance and wisdom that I use today to be the best mom possible to your grandson.
One more note, when my dad died, friends and family would say “how are you feeling?” I really thought about that question, pondered it. My response was that I felt grateful and proud. Grateful for all those many wonderful seeds he planted while parenting me and proud, because simply put, I am ‘his’ daughter. Dad, onward, upward, and here’s to teachable moments!
Dr. Laura, I’ve listened to your program for many years now. I haven’t just been a listener but I’ve truly “listened.” I want to thank you for your wise advice, but most of all, your true genuine spirit.