Father’s Day is a mere moments away. While I can’t be physically near my father since he’s in another state, I thought I’d post an old article I wrote for him years ago. I hope you’ll enjoy it and have a Happy Father’s Day yourself!
Perhaps the greatest evidence of age comes in comparison to those around you. When I was big enough to walk, but small enough to need daddy’s hand to hold, the world was still young and so was he and I. Big hands to cover tiny fingers were what security embodied looked like. I needed him for support and he willingly obliged. As I got older, my father would run past me calling me “slowpoke” because I would always fall behind. I remember our weekly walks to the neighborhood park where I would stare at his feet gigantic in comparison to mine. To walk beside him I needed to take double steps to his one and I thought to myself that I would never be grown up enough to catch up to him. No matter how fast I walked beside him, he would always be faster. That’s how fathers should be I thought, forever.
As our pace began to mirror each other, the distance between us also disappeared. The park that I once built my childhood on had also changed. When I became an adult, the same park didn’t feel as safe. It had become the home for the homeless and filled with addicts and graffiti. Funny how so much can change within one’s lifetime.
As I left my twenties, I began to notice a difference in our walks together. I was starting to know more about life, through my education, our unshared experiences, by living in other states. Where once we raced ahead into an unknown future, now our pace grew slower to catch up for him. His knees hurt he said. His back was too sore to go on. And I was the one who said, “We’re almost home” instead of him who used to coach me on. I could tell that he was frustrated. Our bodies fail us with age it’s true. It makes me sad that life goes that way though it is inevitable.
I still walk with my father, side by side. And I am grateful for all the moments captured in the paces we’ve walked, one step at a time. I’ve realized, as I got older that it’s not how fast or how far you go, but all the pleasures of the precious moments in between.