Turning 78! Happy Birthday Dad!

We had my dad’s 78 birthday party today and while he is failing and his health is getting the best of him, he’s so awesome!!!  I love my dad!!  He is the best!!  He’s funny, he’s amazing, and in spite of the life that has been dealt him, he’s still hitting it in stride. 

Dad still gets up everyday, goes in to eat breakfast, still works on the farm. 

Still putters around working on things, and fixing things.  I hope he never stops!  I’m selfish…

I know the day is coming and I know that my dad is in poor health.  He’s on oxygen almost constantly.  He has End Stage Emphysema and is getting little bugs more and more as the days go by, but still he doesn’t stop.

Dad has lived a pretty amazing and difficult life when you look at it.  At 31, he was in a car wreck, that not only crushed him, but took the life of his only son, he lived for months in a body cast.  Left crippled and would never work in an organized job again due to this injury.  However, he had some amazing friends and family.  While this happened.  Our friends and family, it was August when it happened, and harvest time, took over daddy’s farm, got all the crop in, on time, got everything to market, made sure that all the crops were canned, and put up.    Yep, that’s just amazing that, they left their families, during such a hard time anyway, (1964) and did so much for our family, because we couldn’t.  

Then Dad literally had a life changing career, and had to farm, a very hard life, dusk to dawn, depending on rain, winters, heat, cold, literally, mom would pray to God daily for the gift of God’s weather, to see us through each summer, and each winter, and no matter what happened, mom and dad, got us through.  I don’t know how they did it, but they did it.  We never wanted for anything.  

They saw us through band, through cheerleading, through sports, through activites, anything we wanted.  They gave.

We graduated,  we married, Then dad, lost another child.  My middle sister.  Okay.  TWO kids.  One is enough, but now two.  But still he musters on.  And mom is his biggest champion the whole way through.  This is in 1988.  All this time, he’s dealt with us kids all the time, with us, having problems in HS, problems in college, our problems with drugs, getting in trouble, divorce, our coming home, moving out, moving in, and just loved us in spite of ourselves.  Dad is amazing.  We’ve had kids of our own, we’ve had homes of our own.  And still Dad is alwasy there. 

Then in 1988.  Life changes forever for dad a second time.  Melanie is taken from us.  Dad moves on.  lives his life.  keeps going and musters on.  He’s always there for me and my oldest sister.  We are all that’s left of the kids.  Although he’s hard, he’s there for us, no matter what.  He never leaves our sides.  Although at times, we think he does.

Then his dad dies in 1993, mom is in the hospital diagnosed with kidney cancer and then dies the next January.  And he still muddles on.  Then my husband is diagnosed with cancer in August of 94.  And still he muddles on.

Kids of kids get married, have babies, move on, move out, move in, move home.  And still he muddles on.

Dad is the best!  I’ve seen people with lives like this that would break under all the pressure.  I did.  And yes dad has shut things out, and gotten hard, but for the most part, dad is funny, and is good to us!  He is a great dad!  

I love you Dad.  I thank you Dad!  I can never give back to you, everything you’ve ever given to us in our life, but I thank you for everything.  Big and small.  And I hope that we have so many more years, and I pray that whatever years we have left can only be the best years of your life!!


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