It’s been eleven years. I miss him everyday; his strong hands, the fresh scent of Irish Spring soap, and the hint of grease.
I grew up under his wing, his little shadow in the garage. Just for fun, on weekends, Dad worked on friend’s cars. He rebuilt muscle cars and repaired daily rides.
Dad was a gymnast, therefore I was a gymnast. My dad loved dancing, so I loved dancing. He called me “Punkin” and loved Eskimo kisses.
He was an incredible provider, but working a swing shift stole a lot of family time. I missed him so much during the week that on weekends I did everything he did. If he was raking leaves, I was jumping in and out of them. If he was working on a car, I played with my Barbies on the front seat, close enough to hand him a wrench.
The day he died I was rushing through airports, trying to get to him. I promised to hold his hand as he passed into heaven. That didn’t happen. Thankfully he was surrounded by family. I’m grateful for the amazing care my family gave Dad on his last day. They told me later he felt my presence in the room.
Our last conversations are precious to me. Dad loved and trusted my husband. He told him he felt peace about passing on, knowing I was taken care of.
My dad also spoke to each of my children individually. He gave gifts specifically picked just for them. And he told my kiddos to go outside every full moon because he’d be sitting on the top dangling his feet off the side.
Dad knew how to love well. He adored us all. I know not everyone is blessed to have a dad like mine. The Oola category of Family can be challenging.
Here are three ways my Dad modeled OolaFamily principals we can all learn from:
He was present during family times.
He included me in his day and listened.
He helped other people.
Even though he’s gone, his love goes on. Dad sends it down from above. We gather it up every full moon. As our family stands on the deck, looking up at the moon, we say hello to Grandpa Lyndon. The reality of his love unifies our family, helps our kids remember him and reminds us all to love as he did.
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Susie Bradley is a certified Oola Life Coach. You can find her at essentiallyfitlife.com and follow her journey on social media by following @essentiallyfit11 on Instagram.