Things my dad taught me…

Lately, I have been writing in a journal more. Sort of reflection on my feelings, my thoughts, my experiences, my wins, my losses. I want to be able to learn from them all. Good or bad.

I am writing this blog post because I had thought about my childhood lately. Recalling events and my feelings during these events and things I learned. The one occurring theme is that my dad was there to teach me something: to keep on moving on and be strong.

As a kid, I remember my sisters and I had tied these string swings to the tree branches that stood tall in our front yard. I don’t know why we did it because my dad had built us a nice swing made out of thick yellow nylon rope and a nice piece of sanded down wood for us to sit on. There were about 4 of these string swings. There were literally made out of smaller yellow nylon string and one end was tied to a tree branch and the other would be tied the same branch to form a “u” shaped swing. One day I was riding my bike around the yard, enjoying myself on a nice sunny day then all of a sudden I lift my head up and my butt off my banana seat bike that was passed down to me from my sister who received it from our oldest sister (A bike passed down 3x). I loved this bike but as I lifted my head and came around the tree and under the tree branch, WHACK! Or whatever noise the nylon string swing had made that day. I was literally clothes-lined by the swings me and my sisters had made. It hurt. I couldn’t speak. I jumped off my bike and walked over to my dad. By the time I got over to my dad I was able to breathe again and had burst out crying while holding my throat. My dad asked me what happened and I told him. He stepped away from his truck that he was working on, looked at me, said I would be alright, and within 2 seconds went back to work on his truck.

I love my dad. When I think of this, I laugh and I wonder why me and my sister built those swings when my dad had built a nice swing for us already. I wonder why I was riding my bike around with my head down and then wonder why I all of a sudden decided to stand up while riding my bike. What I don’t wonder about is why my dad didn’t comfort me…. I wasn’t really hurt. I was just stunned. Keep on moving on and that is what both he and I did that did. I continued to play and he continued to work on his truck.

Then again as a kid, I remember going for a walk down to the water with my dad. It was a sunny day and we did this frequently as a family. That day, and I don’t remember why, I had a penny in my mouth. Seriously, I don’t know why I had the penny in my mouth. We were walking all in a straight line and I remember I looked down, stepped into a swampy area by accident, almost fell, then POOF! The penny went down my throat. I choked, gagged, and by the time the penny was in my stomach, I looked up at my dad, started crying and said I swallowed a penny. He just looked at me, kept on walking and said, “You will be alright.” I was alright. The only thing now was when we returned home I had to poop in a port-a-potty type thing, put it outside (Well my dad did that; things parents must do for their kids, eh?) and then wait until the penny reared its ugly little face. Sorry about that. A bit much? Yeah, gross. I learned not to put pennies in my mouth again or any money at all. When I read the Cree Proverb,

“Only when the last tree is cut; only when the last river is polluted; only when the last fish is caught; only then will they realize that you cannot eat money.”

Literally, you cannot eat money!

Again, I love my dad. When I think of this, I laugh and I wonder why the hell did I put the penny in my mouth in the first place. What I don’t wonder about is why my dad didn’t comfort me…. I wasn’t really hurt. I was just stunned. Keep on moving on and that is what both he and I did that did. I stopped crying, kept walking and so did he.

3 Things I have learned from these incidents:

  1. If the going gets tough, even if it is only for a few seconds, keep on going and keep strong.
  2. My dad knows best.
  3. And the Crees are right: you can’t eat money.
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