Saturday night in Nampa Idaho......8/6/2016 and it is 11:12 PM. And here I am after a pretty good day...... Chris has gone to bed and I thought I'd put some things down.
First of all, if you have not read my previous post about miracles, please read it, or, at least get to the bottom of the post and click on the radio link for the James Dobson interview. Listen carefully and you will experience a miracle. So do it! Then after reading my story and my miracle with alcoholism, and the James Dobson link, and you are still hesitant to believe in God, well, just keep looking, and praying. You will one day see God right in front of you. Just open your eyes a little bigger.
It is sort of funny writing this post. As I type in the various words, a little red, squiggly line automatically positions itself under words that are spelled wrong. First sentence above, forth word "Nampa" is underlined. Stupid spell check. Nampa is spelled N A M P A. Like I said, sutpaad spall chcek.
Now, here is some more advice. Listen carefully. On google, enter in 'Cloverton Hallelujah on YouTube'. It is a beautiful rendition of Leonard Cohens original Hallelujah, with different lyrics.
On the right hand side of the screen, there is a choice of 50+ Mix, Cloverton type songs......hit that and listen to some some outstanding music. Pay particular attention to Lindsey Stirlings version of Hallelujah. Wow. It is also beautiful.
I watched on TV tonight the National Football Leagues class of 2016 hall of fame inductees. With Chris also watching, we watched and listened to 4 of the inductees, and we will finish watching the rest of the inductees on Sunday. All of their speeches were worth listening to. All spoke of their families, and how love and support were key reasons for their success, reaching the NFL hall of fame. They also mentioned coaches, and team mates, and church leaders, and many others, that made an impact in helping these new NFL hall of famers reach this point. These new members are so thankful. They all realized that they could not have done this on their own. These inductees took the time to say thank you to these people, for their help, and support, and love.
For me, it was sort of hard to listen to. I wondered how far I could have gone had I received the love and support of my family, in particular my dad. You see, I, along with my two older sisters, and younger brother, basic survival is how we existed. My dad was a self centered alcoholic and he really missed his chance at molding a future 'Hall of Famer'.
From my earliest memory, to my last day before I left for college, (probably for many years after that) my dad caused much fear, sadness, tension, misery, tears, and anger for my family, and much more. It was not good. All of us kids suffered the same daily (yes, daily) routine, as did our mother. It was so constant and direct, I think we all figured that this was normal. It was not normal. My dad affected all of us. He dominated all of us with his everyday anger and selfishness. And he never let up. He was fueled by alcohol. After my sisters moved out to start their new lives, my brother and I had to put up with this chaos, and we did our best to protect our mom. My dad was not a roll model in any way. As a father, a husband, a neighbor. He knew it all, and it was always his way. My poor mother. She put up with my dad for way too long. She should have left him. My brother and I had many instances where we had to physically confront our dad to protect ourselves, and our mom. I often think of the various outcomes had I taken a more active roll dealing with my dad.
So, here is why I am writing tonight.......I wonder what I could have accomplished had my dad been there, supporting me, guiding me, being a roll model for me. He was not any of that. He was barely a dad, and I am sure as he got older he had many regrets as to his neglect of his kids. In the end, my dad missed out on many things. And he could never get it back. How very sad for us, but also for him.
I was a loving child. I was a peacemaker, with my family as a young boy. I found little league baseball and football, and was good in both of them. I had many friends as a kid. I liked my friends. They liked me. In junior and senior high school, I excelled in football and baseball, and carried both into my freshman year in college. I graduated from the University of Washington. I was offered a prized deckhand position on a fishing boat in Alaska. I became a very good fisherman, and was just a shade away from becoming a captain on a 125 foot Alaskan shrimp trawler. It was at this time that Chris and I met, and now, almost 43 years later we are still laughing, and loving, with one another. With the help and support of Chris, I started my own business, and had it for 35 years. It was a success because of hard work and impeccable customer service. Chris and I are now retired, and our passion today is our Christian faith (and of course, our 7 grandkids!) We have, as our goal, to treat all people with love. With joyfulness.
So, what does all of this have to do with my dad? It is simply to wonder where I could have ended up had my dad been a different dad. I wonder if I could have reached the Hall of Fame? Obviously not the NFL hall of fame, rather the kind of hall of fame all of us can strive for, and one that we can all reach. A result achieved by the support and love of our families, especially our dads.
A good father has one chance in life to push their kids to do their very best. To teach their kids to give 100%. To teach them to get up when they fall down. You know, just the basic stuff a dad does.
My dad missed his one opportunity to teach me, my brother, and my two sisters. His loss. Oh well.
Hey dads......you only have one chance.
Thanks all. TomG
PS. Now I feel better.