For those of you who know my dad, this post may make you giggle a little bit, because, well, you probably know him and all of his little quirks that make him who he is. I am so incredibly grateful for the relationship we have. Last week was especially special because it marked my eight year anniversary in Seattle. I remember the road trip my dad and I took up from Colorado, through Utah, Jackson Hole, the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, and Idaho. It was such a special trip for me.
Despite living far away, the conversations that we have are deeper and more meaningful than ever. I guess that is what it means to be getting older...your whole relationship with your parents transforms yet you can't really say when it happened...it just kind of does.
My dad is a special dude. He has taught me so many things and every day, there is at least something I do, think, or say that reminds me, "Oh yeah...dad taught me this."
Gifts that show up as lessons are super special. The best gifts really.
Lesson 1: Have dreams and work your ass off for them. My dad had a dream to own a Harley. He has one. He had a dream to build a camp up in the mountains. We spent a couple days up there in May. One thing I know about my dad is that he aspires to live big. Not big in the materialistic way, but in the dream big and work hard to get what you want. When I was going through my own financial recovery, my yoga teacher training and trip to India were my big dreams and they both happened. I had to work my ass off for them, but they happened. And it felt so damn good to fulfill on them. Thank you dad for showing me that dreams happen.
Lesson 2: Find your thing. My mom and I always joke that my dad doesn't know how to relax. He fiddles around, builds things, works down in the basement on projects. It's his zen. As much as I give him crap for not being able to sit still, I admire that he has his own monastery of sorts. Building, tinkering, fixing, inventing, repairing. Home improvement projects are his deal...mine is reading on the deck, or hiking in the woods (he loves to hike and be in the outdoors too, that's where I get it from), but we all have our thing. Honor that and do more of it. It's the fuel for life and your soul.
Lesson 3: Get to know something bigger than you. My dad travels a lot for work. He always has. He has been to every continent, except Antarctica, and most continents two or three times. I fell in love with travel through him. Both my parents inspired my brother and me to look outside of our own home and go on adventures. Near or far, we were always out and about, exploring, adventuring, walking on new paths. My dad taught me that travel keeps us on our toes, grateful for what we have right in front of us. For this, I am beyond grateful. It has inspired me to travel, near and far and take precious lessons home with me.
Lesson 4: It's okay to be quiet. My dad is naturally introverted. Just like me. Or me like him. Whatever. What I do know is that I love just being able to sit and be in the same room for a few hours, napping, reading a book, or watching a show on TV. Looking to him made me okay with my own introverted nature. I was never forced to go out and party a bunch or be super social and it was acceptable if I wanted to just sit in on a Friday night. This, combined with the outdoors made for some pretty cool wilderness experiences too.
Lesson 5: Breakfast. My dad is a breakfast king. Omelettes, french toast, hash browns, bacon, the works. My dad always said that having a good breakfast is a foundation. Growing up, a hearty breakfast was the ticket to powering through chores with an afternoon of goofing off or playing with friends. Every time I bust out my eggs and veggies in Seattle, I bow a little to my dad. He used to make breakfast for dinner when mom had evening things...best. thing, ever. Love the breakfast king. Hail to the king.
So there you have it. Some of my most precious gifts my dad ever gave me. Lots of love to all the dads on this Father's Day and every day. You do big work out there and you don't even know the gems you are handing off.