Wiley's Wisdom

Joy: From the Ground Up

Leaving a Legacy June 15, 2014

Filed under: Man's Best Friend — Wiley Schmidt @ 9:35 pm
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I’ll never know what it’s like. Not because I don’t want to, because I do. I just can’t. I know, it’s not the usual for me, your resident doggie optimDad and Iist to say I can’t do something. But this is one of those things I honestly can’t do regardless of my feelings on the matter.

Because at some point along the line, I had an operation that will forever keep me from ever knowing what it’s like to be a dad. I didn’t have a choice at the time, it was just one of those things that happened at the humane society. Given all of the other good things that happened to me there, I know it was probably for the best. But I do occasionally wonder what it would be like to be a dad.

Especially on a day like today when all of the people in my homeland celebrate dads. Today is Father’s Day in America, and it was a pretty special one around here since it was a first for my forever dad. Sure, mom and I have always conspired to do something to commemorate the day as he is my forever dad. But this is different because little baby Carter is in the picture now.

So it made sense to me that we packed up the car (my first car ride in the new ride, and it was great) and head to grandma’s house to meet up with other dads in the family. Seeing these men together, three generations of dads, really got me to thinking about what it means to me to have such a great dad to call my own. He loves me. He plays with me. He makes a special effort to pay extra attention to me since baby Carter was born. He’s my buddy. He’s my friend. He’s my forever dad. I am so blessed.

It does sometimes bother me that I will never know what it’s like to be a dad. But I do know how to be a son to a caring, loving, loyal man. That is his living legacy. And that will always be enough for me.

 

Man’s Best Friend June 16, 2013

Man’s best friend was lost on me in puppyhood. I have been blessed with more than my fair share of loving motherly types in my life, but I’ve had somewhat a drought of father figures.

I never met my biological father. I hated him for it every day I watched mom struggle to provide and make such short ends meet. My time with her was a gift and I wouldn’t change a bit of it for myself. We had fun, we didn’t go hungry and we always had a (somewhat warm) place to sleep. But I hated him for leaving her to do so much all by herself. And I wonder sometimes if he would have been in the equation if we would have all gotten separated on that fateful day so many years ago.Dad and I

My path in life would never be the same after we got separated. And wow, can a change in scenery can change your perspective on things. I went from not having a dad to having a string of them who were terrible to me. The worst (by far) was the man with the leather belt. I shudder to think of all those times I tried to protect Jo (the man’s daughter) from him, and the chaos and pain that made up the aftermath. To this day, I have a somewhat obsessive fear of leather belts, baseball bats, power tools and laundry baskets.

These pieces of my past remain in my present but that doesn’t change my current outlook on things. I’ve learned a lot along the way about the strength we have in perseverance through the tough times. Through each struggle we emerge stronger, better, and more equipped to take on the next mountain in life.

Man’s best friend was lost on me in puppyhood, but all that has changed now thanks to the current father figure in my life.

Today is Father’s Day in America, and for the first time in my life I have someone to celebrate. I know getting a dog was mom’s idea, but my forever dad is the one who found me online at the Oshkosh Humane Society. He’s the one I play with, wrestle around with and prefer to snuggle up to at night (mom gets too warm). He doesn’t say he loves me nearly as much as mom, but he doesn’t have to. I can set it in his eyes when we’re playing, when we have an epic love fest (usually when mom’s not around) and even when he talks nonsense to me. He loves me more than he’ll ever admit. And he has restored my faith in the concept of man’s best friend. I love you dad.