Sunday, May 17, 2015

Reflection #30/40

One of my earliest memories is of running away from my father when he came home from work. I ran outside, across the yard, into my grandmother’s yard, before he caught me. He hugged me, glad to see me, but I was genuinely annoyed that I hadn't managed to get away.

I also remember the time I went into my parents’ bathroom and tried to put cologne on my father’s toothbrush, to make it taste bad. This backfired, because I accidentally put it on my mother’s toot
hbrush instead.

Why did I have a vendetta against my father? I don’t know. I guess it’s just a stage. I know that my two-year-old son is always upset when his mother leaves and he gets stuck with me.

Fortunately, I figured out early on that my father is a stand-up guy. And it’s good that I liked him, because he was always around. I don’t just mean at home, or on family trips. He was my Boy Scout troop leader, my junior high librarian, a chaperone on field trips, a Future Problem Solving coach, my brother in the Order of the Arrow, the sponsor of the Young Astronauts club, and much more.

In 1989, he drove me and my friends to Washington, D.C. for the Boy Scout National Jamboree. In 1995, when a friend and I were stranded in Texas, he came and got us. When that same friend needed help being moved out of an apartment in Chicago in 1999, my father drove the truck.

My father has always been there, always willing to help me out. To be fair, though, he’d probably help you out, too. He’s just an all-around good person. Not in a boring or self-righteous way;
 Jim Connor is a fun guy. More than once in my adult life, I’ve invited someone to a party, and their eyes have lit up and they said, “Is your dad going to be there?”

As I have gotten older I’ve realized that, with all the deadbeat dads in the world, I am extraordinarily lucky to have a father who has always been there for me. And that is why, after all these years, I would like to publicly apologize for putting the cologne on the toothbrush.

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