Today my Dad would be 60 years old. He actually was looking forward to 60. It would be Vegas: Round 2. And this time my sister and I would’ve been old enough to join in. But, instead, this is our third November 6th without him and the heaviness on this day will probably always be there. Each year, this day has had its challenges. But 2019 is the hardest for a new reason – my son, Charlie.
He wore a flannel button-up shirt today in the same plaid that my dad had. The sleeves were rolled up and his shoes were canvas slip ons. It was a mini replica of the regular weekend ensemble for Scott Frost. I took cute pictures, I beamed with pride. But Charlie won’t get it. Not just because he’s 3 months old, but because he never saw that Saturday outfit in person. He doesn’t get to know first-hand why his grandpa is so funny. We’ll try and tell the same jokes, but we won’t do them justice. He doesn’t know the plans Dad made for the two of them before Charlie was even a thought. I’ll try to take him to as many stadiums and National parks as I can, but the original vacation planner won’t be there to take the credit for his itinerary. It will be up to me and my family to teach Charlie about his grandpa. It will be up to us to share the many life lessons that Dad taught us:
Never open a new ketchup before the old one has been used.
Always finish what you started.
If a team is counting on you, see it through.
If there’s cake, then you should go.
Dad, I promise it won’t be perfect, It won’t be as good as if you were here to teach him yourself, but I’m still going to try.
So, while ten years ago we thought we’d all be in Vegas celebrating another decade of Dad, this year we found ourselves in a corner booth of our local Carrabba’s. We toasted him with waters as they packed up our food very quickly because our baby was out past his bedtime and was making it known. It wasn’t perfect, but we tried. And we always will.
Happy 60th Birthday, Dad – We miss you everyday.