As I’ve said before, my Dad is the one who introduced me to the Grateful Dead so many years ago. This blog is in many ways dedicated to him and today, this post is all for him…
When I imagine my childhood there are certain images, sounds, and smells that fill my head. These are the things that bring me so much comfort and happiness as I get older and farther from home. Last time I was home visiting my family, I dug through the family photographs looking for those images that still lived in my head. One of those is of my Dad working in the yard or around the house in his blue, worn Grateful Dead Europe ’72 t-shirt.
You see, my dad, he’s a working man inside and outside of the house. He took care of our homes with his own blood, sweat, and tears. Even at a young age I carried so much pride that our home was essentially built by my father. Dad, I hope you know how endlessly grateful I am for this. You gave us not just a roof over our heads, but a place where I felt safe, comfortable, and loved. And even though I’m 700 miles away now, I still feel safe because I know, no matter what, no matter how bad things get, I have you and our home to go back to. I can’t tell you how profound and important this has been in my life. It’s one reason why I am the person I am today.
Speaking of being 700 miles away, I have to thank my Dad for getting me here, to my dreams. When I first decided that I would move to New York City at age 18 and study theatre (and later, film) my Dad was furious. He didn’t understand why I wanted to do what I did and had a hard time supporting my relocation as a young woman to a big, scary city ripe with rejection and challenges. Being at odds with my father over the biggest decision of my life was one of the hardest times in my life. Flash forward five years later and my Dad has so much faith and pride in me. But Dad, I want you to know that the only reason I was able to make it to where I am today and to be the person I am, is because you kicked my ass every step of the way. You made me examine every choice I made and not to take anything lightly. You taught me that I have to put up a fierce fight to get the things I want. If it weren’t for any of that, I don’t know that I’d be the strong woman I am today.
My father is the greatest man I know. My love, gratitude, and admiration go on for an eternity and certainly can’t be accurately expressed in a blog post. So, I think I’ll stop here and give him a call.
Thank you Dad. I love you more than you can ever know.
“Look for a while at the China Cat Sunflower
proud-walking jingle in the midnight sun
Copper-dome bodhi drip a silver kimono
like a crazy-quilt star gown
through a dream night wind”
China Cat Sunflower