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My Rock

My father was my rock.


As a little girl, I loved the feel of my tiny hand being held by his big, strong, always warm grip. And when I sat on his lap, his entire body enveloped me into him so that his stories became mine, and my little girl worries evaporated and were transformed into laughter. I was always safe when he was near.


As a teenager, I loved the feel of my teenaged angst being held by his big strong, always present wisdom. He understood me when I was certain that no one else did. He listened with his eyes; he looked at me when I spoke, and I knew that he saw me – all of me. And when I ranted and raved in his presence, his entire being absorbed it all so that his confidence became mine, and my uncertainties about life were transformed into joyful curiosity. My immature declarations were always validated by his gentle patience.





As a young woman, a new wife and mother, I loved the settling into those roles by his big, strong, always easing smile. He nurtured my inner knowing by his unspoken assurance. And when I made my choices, he held the infancy of my adulthood in the depth of his big, strong, wealth of experience.



As an old man, he loved the touch of my grown hand stroking his soft, white hair. And when I sat by his side, his weary confusion melted into mine so that my memories and my stories were once again his. He was safe in his contentment, though lost in his confusion. And even though he was far away, I was with him.


As an aging woman navigating this world without the physical presence of him, I can always close my eyes and still feel my Daddy’s blue and white sears sucker summer suit on the tips of my fingers. I can feel our two hands holding each other as we danced. I can smell his cologne. And I can hear his voice singing to me the song, Wide Open Spaces (*Dixie Chicks), “she needs wide open spaces, room to make her own mistakes…” I am safe in his presence – his continuing presence – and in the memories he gave me and the memories that are ours alone. I am validated, confident and assured by the wisdom, strength, and contentment that were, and continue to be, the rock in my life: My father.



I am safe in his presence – his continuing presence – and in the memories he gave me and the memories that are ours alone. I am validated, confident and assured by the wisdom, strength, and contentment that were, and continue to be, the rock in my life: My father.


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