I have much to be happy about on Father’s Day.
There’s my dad, of course. He adopted me when he married my mother. I was a mere pup at the time, and he’s the only father I’ve ever known. We last were in the same room a little more than a year ago when my parents came to California for my youngest daughter’s high school graduation. Before that, the last face time was when Jill and I got married in 2005.
I feel his influence on me most days, even separated as we are by the breadth of the North American continent. We talk on the phone – not nearly as often as we should. I blame the three-hour time difference. Really, though, I blame myself. Call this a Father’s Day resolution to keep in better contact with both Mom and Dad in the year ahead.
My experience as an adopted child made it easy for me to adopt my oldest two children when the opportunity presented itself during my first marriage. I rank them, and their younger sister, among the best aspects of my life – right up there with my parents and, of course, wife Jill.
Now for a bit of Dad bragging. I can’t help myself. This is Father’s Day, after all.
My oldest daughter and her husband just got a new car – better gas mileage and more reliable than their former vehicle – in preparation for her husband’s first deployment with the U.S. Air Force. They bought their first home this year, have a new puppy who’s not so much a puppy anymore (and is now a pal to their cat), and are well on their way to making a happy life for themselves.
The middle child – my son – works restaurants to pay the bills but is also embracing his entrepreneurial self through his fledgling sports apparel business. Some of the designs he comes up with to adorn what begin life as regular shirts are truly impressive. That’s not just a proud father’s perspective; it’s also the perspective of his stepmother Jill, a professional graphic artist (and teacher) by education and training.
Did I mention that he’s into competitive jujitsu? Or that he just earned his blue belt?
Finally there’s the youngest daughter. You may recall back-to-back columns here early this spring where I told our tale of adding a vehicle to the family holdings so the youngest could have wheels while she’s away at college.
Well, she got my 2005 Volkswagen Jetta a week ago Saturday – call it an extended loaner – and I’m now driving the leased 2014 Ford Fiesta full time. All that’s left on this little project is to pay the new auto insurance bill, which should hit our mailbox any day now.
The Jetta handoff came just in time: She started the college summer session Monday – two three-unit classes – and is actively seeking a job to carry her through the summer and into the fall semester. She also found a new place to live, completing the move a week or so before the summer session began. The goal: at least one A and one B in the two summer classes so she’ll have an overall 3.0 grade point average – and Jill and I can get a discount on the cost for her car insurance. Fingers crossed, everyone.
Truthfully, I couldn’t be more happy for each of them. As for me, I’m a blessed husband; a grateful son; a proud father. Just call me Happy Dad on this day.
Reach Managing Editor Glen Faison at 427-6925 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GlenFaison.