I had last seen my dad in March when he was staying in a care facility. Then, the covid19 epidemic hit, and the state went on lockdown. I had stayed in contact via the phone, but that wasn’t the same as being there. Yesterday, I drove down to see my mom and dad for the first time in three months. It’s been rough on both of them adjusting to dad’s needs, but he does seem to be a lot happier to be at home.
Rummaging through his barn for a gas tank we needed, I was struck by how much so many of the things which sit in the barn reminded me of the time I had spent with my father. These included the two soapbox-styled cars my sister and I built, fishing trips, mowing the lawn, and time spent just sitting in front of his workbench and chatting about his time in the Navy, or just things in general. The barn always felt like a space that was shared with us. He always invited me to use any tool I needed for my projects, as long as I did so responsibly.
I am grateful to my father for everything he taught me, such as the importance of hard work and preparedness. I have held on to these same ideals throughout my own career, and hope to pass along these lessons to my own kids.