October 04, 2010

What if...

The last time I posted was September 25, which would have been my dad's 65th birthday; BUT today is October 4, and it's been 34 years since he died. That's a lot of time.

I've been feeling a bit of competition for Jon's time lately because I love to talk to the man, but so do his sons. I love to hear him tell me that I need to chill out. I love to gross out our boys by kissing in the kitchen. I love to joke around with him. I love having inside secrets. I love to watch him stop what he's doing and make sure that whichever niece is in the room knows that she is his most favorite.

I know that my dad loved to spend time with me. I know that he had a sense of humor. I remember one night when he got home from work a little bit late. I remember hanging on his arm while his hand was in his coat pocket and reaching into the pocket to pull out what he said he got for me. It was a piece of paper. Turns out that it was a speeding ticket, and he told me he got it so that I'd know what one looked like.

My dad died the Monday after General Conference, and my mom said that he decided to stay home from church with me & Cory that last Sunday. I guess that they didn't watch conference on TV or listen to it on the radio then. I don't have any idea what we did that day, but I like to think that he went to sleep content following his last day on earth.

There are a lot of things that would have been different for me if he'd been around. I have to wonder
  • Would I have been nearly as boy insane (that's right, not just boy crazy) if he'd been here?
  • Was I just seeking male attention?
  • Would I know more about cars and what makes them hum?
  • Would I have shot a gun other than at the birds eating my grandma's raspberries?
  • How often would I talk to him on the phone?
  • Would I know his LDS conversion story?
  • What would he have been like as a grandpa?
  • Where would we have lived?
  • Would I still have gone to Utah State and met and married Jon?
  • Would he have put Jon through the wringer?
  • Would I have been better at basketball because he practiced with me?
I am blessed with an incredible father-in-law and stepdad. Both of these men have taught me many things. I'm grateful for the relationship I have with both of them, for the understanding they offer and for the pearls of wisdom even when I think I don't need it. I'm grateful for the experiences they give me. I'm humbled by the times they do little things that only matter to me.

So - I guess tonight I'm meandering between pity party and gratitude. Kind of a somber place to be.

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