Dad’s Best Year

One of the things I love most about writing is that, by doing so, we get to freeze time… kind of like a photograph.  We have the ability to save the moments we cherish. And today, I experienced a moment that I’d definitely like to keep…

“Dad, out of all of the years you’ve lived, what’s your very best year so far?” I wanted to know.
“1978,” my father answered without hesitation.
“Why’s that?” I asked.

We were sitting at Cheesecake Factory, obsessively checking flight updates, trying to determine if Morgan’s flight was delayed.  Did we have just 30 minutes left with her, before she had to leave, or was it an hour and 15 minutes?  And ultimately, my dad wanted to know: Was there time for low-carb cheesecake and coffee?

“1978 was the year I married your mother,” he said.  “It wasn’t long before she was pregnant with you.”

“It was incredible,” he continued in his thick New York accent. “I mean, I know people have babies every day, but it felt like a miracle. You were my first kid, ya know?”

No, I didn’t know. I actually had no idea that my dad felt this way, but I’m so glad I asked.  Asking questions is important, and it opens up possibilities for conversations like this one.

There’s a book called Live in Wonder, by an author named Eric Saperston.  After college, Eric spent a year on the road, following The Grateful Dead and asking questions along the way.  He had the opportunity to sit down for coffee with some of the most powerful people in the world.  He wanted to find out the values they lived by, and the struggles they overcame. Ultimately, he wanted to know what advice they’d pass along, to prepare others for the road ahead.  I’m super inspired by that.  So, I recently decided that I’m going to start asking more questions.

Meanwhile, Ness was looking our way with a raised eyebrow.  She must have sensed that I was having a moment with Dad.  “But shhhh…. Don’t tell your sister that you’re my favorite,” Dad said loudly with a chuckle.  “Wait! What?!” Vanessa squealed and playfully nudged Dad in the ribs.

“But seriously,” she said. “What are you guys talking about?”

I freaking love my family.

Turns out, Morgan’s flight WAS delayed.  We got the extra time with her AND the low carb cheesecake 😉


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