Mom and Dad

March 28, 2009

Two Foxes :: 

1) My mom.

She is right most of the time. On the one hand, when I go to her for relationship advice, she asks questions like, “Do you think she was thinking this?” and I have to say, “Mom, for me to even guess at that is counterproductive.” On the other hand, she knows intuitively when something is amiss, when I’m too nonchalant, not excited enough. She likes to say that “It shouldn’t be work in the beginning. It should just be fun. Plenty of time to work at it later on.” So simple and so true. My sweet mom.

My mom is an ace at hospitality. She loves cooking for people. She’s told me that is one of her outlets for creativity.

Birthdays and holidays are always a big deal. For Valentine’s Day, she bought me a leather chair and ottoman at an estate sale. My parents, my older sister, and my nieces came to visit me and brought it.

She’s always thinking about other people. She’s both unselfish and generous, to the degree that I want to protect her so that people don’t take advantage.

I love how fiercely she loves my two sisters and me. I have never doubted that love. parents

2) My dad.

He used to scrape the ice off our windshields so we could drive straight to school without waiting on the defroster.

My dad and I went to Haiti together, and it was a blessing to see one another in a different context. He got to see me when I feel most alive—traveling and serving. He told me how proud he was to see me work so hard and take charge and keep a sense of humor. We got into an argument—our arguments are more discussions than antagonistic—when I talked about buying some Cuban cigars. He thought that might offend some people in our group. However, that conversation led to another conversation in which we agreed not to doubt one another’s sincerity in faith matters anymore.

 

My dad is a rock. He can be so silly and quirky too. He takes really good care of things. I’ve only ever seen him use one riding lawnmower. He bought it used and has used it over 24 years! He always does what he says he will do. He’s a man of his word. I like making him laugh until he cries. He can be mischievous: he was always pulling April Fool’s pranks.

Despite those gags, I trust him. I remember reading Wild at Heart in high school and thinking, “Gosh, what are my father wounds?” The only thing I could come up with is that I wish he’d taught me to take risks. I’ve had to teach myself, but that doesn’t leave very much room for complaint. A Christlike attribute of his: He has the humility to say, “I’m sorry,” and “I don’t know.” I’ve never lost respect for him for saying either.

 

I get embarrassed at Christmas because my parents are so generous. When we all would go back to school after Christmas and everyone was discussing their presents, I never wanted to say anything because it was always a conversation stopper. I thought our family would seem materialistic.

One time I was listening to my parents go back and forth accusing each other of snoring. I started laughing. They both turned to me and said, “What?” “You both snore!” I said. They always wanted me to come in and kiss them goodnight when I got home. That’s how I knew. 

 

I’m proud of my parents. If you want to make your dad or mom cry, tell them you’re proud of them. Works every time.

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