Sunday, June 17, 2012

A Tribute to Both Parents!

Today is a day that we specifically celebrate our Fathers. I am blessed to have a wonderful father and mother. The whole month of May was pretty hectic for us and I didn't get a post done for Mother's Day like I had today I want to celebrate both of them!

I think we were very fortunate growing up, we all that we needed, our parents took us on a vacation every year, trips to see our grandparents and camping all over the upper Midwest. We had dinner as a family - and not in front of the TV, we went to church and had Sunday get-together's with other families. They taught us the importance of working hard and saving our money for the things we wanted and most importantly they taught us about God and helped develop that relationship with God at a young age.

For many years my mom didn't work outside the home, so she was there after school to greet us. She always asked us how our day was, had snacks for us etc. She was present and she wanted to be a part of the things that were important to us.

My dad was a part of the carpool group of dad's that drove several of us neighbor kids to school.  He would always tell jokes and sometimes sing in the car.  I may have been a little embarrassed at the time :) but all of the kids loved him and always said what a great dad he was! And they were right!!

Both of my parents went back to school when they were "older". I remember when my dad went to school to become a PA. It was a huge change for him and for us. He was gone for extended periods of time up in North Dakota and my mom was playing the role of single mom. It was a sacrifice they both made - but it produced great results and was a good thing for all of us.  Then several years ago my mom went back to get her Masters degree.  I can't imagine going back to college now after being out so many years. But she did it and it was pretty cool seeing her graduate again.  They showed us that it is ok to work hard and go after something better for yourself - regardless of where you are in life.

And I don't know about your parents - but mine have become increasingly wiser as I have gotten older. ;)  I was, shall we say, a wee bit of a difficult teenager. Ok that's a bit of an understatement.  I pretty much made their lives miserable for many years.  But when I got married, had my own kids, they were the first people I would call if I had a question about something.

How do you make "Wayne and Kitty potatoes"?  "Where do we go to get this fixed on the car?" One of the kids is sick....what should we do?" "We are thinking of doing this...what do you think?"  And the list goes on.

I started asking those questions, making those calls because I was able to see all of the wisdom that they both had. The experiences they had gone through shaped who they were. They had grown and lived through difficult times and knew a thing or two about how to get through them.

I am SO grateful that we have a good relationship today. I am blessed that we have supportive parents who encourage us, will give us advice if we ask...but ultimately let us make our own decisions/mistakes.  My mom prayers for us at red stop lights and my dad has showed us through the years how to be selfless and give back to others.

The examples could go on and on. But the bottom line is I am fortunate to have loving, encouraging, supportive parents. Parents that have showed us how to love and grow. Parents that taught me how to forgive - because they have forgiven me....and parents that loved God and encouraged me to love Him as well.

How have your father or mother loved you well? I'd love to hear your stories as we celebrate this Father's Day!!

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