Dad: "Better now that you called."
For my birthday, when I was 25, I asked my dad to write down seven of his favorite memories about me. Just like every part of his life, he poured his heart and soul into this project. I expected a list, maybe some stories written out. But instead, he presented to me a book, covered in dragonflies, full of his favorite moments with me as his daughter. I often read through it. It makes me laugh, cry, and laugh until I cry.
My dad has an incredible sense of humor, a quick wit and a heart of gold. When I get HIM laughing, I feel victorious. Not to mention that it's infectious.
I can recall as a young girl listening to him laugh so hard while we were on the Tea Cup ride (now called Mad Tea Party) at Disney World. He spun that oversized cup until I swore it was going to fly off the saucer. I can remember screaming, "FASTER!" even though I was plastered to the back of it. When we finally stopped, he had a huge smile on his face and was catching his breath after pulling on that metal wheel thing in the middle to keep us going at warp speed.
He included that exact story in my book. I wasn't surprised because he used to tell it to everyone. Melissa on the teacups...her pigtails were sticking straight out...we were spinning so fast. I always just thought he really enjoyed that ride. And he did, but not because it twirled and whirled us all around. He shared the reason with me in his writing.
"It was one of those once in a lifetime experiences. The moment of
joy that a parent feels when their child is experiencing
pure happiness and they're part of it."
It wasn't until Chris and I had our own children that I could fully grasp exactly what he meant by this. But, as a daughter, the reason I looked forward to that ride was because it was "our ride".
So, when we met up with my parents in Disney World a few summers ago, it was no surprise when my dad and I wasted no time hightailing it to the best ride in the park.
Well, at least to us.
Happy Birthday, Dad!