Sunday, June 21, 2009

Growing Up Fatherless

My father died when I was 5 years old. I have only a few memories of him, but a rather sharp picture of him in my mind and in my heart. For this I thank my mother, who spoke of him often to me, and told me stories that gave me a strong sense of his character. She was always careful to build him up, and I think that was not a hard task as I know that she love him deeply and admired him greatly. I'm aware of some of his defects, which I have come to understand more through deduction of what I know of his life, rather than through direct experience or testimony. Those flaws don't seem to matter much though. It is his strengths, his better side that I see and know and try to be at all times.

  • He worked hard, even though he failed often and saw hard times.
  • He was competent and skilled at his labor.
  • He loved me and my brothers and my mother and sacrificed much for our good.

I stumbled upon an article called 6 Lessons I Learned about Being a Man from Growing Up Fatherless. My case is not the same as this young man's (my father did not abandon us, nor was he an addict, or abuser of people ) but I appreciate what he has written here and would echo it. I learned many of the same lessons, but not in reaction to my father, rather in admiration for my father.

So here's to you Ernest Octave Denis. May I be half the man you were.

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