Monday, April 11, 2011

Fathers are so important in the lives of their children, I am glad I know two wonderful ones.

My dad always worked hard all of his working life, when he was 18 his father, my grandfather Jim, got tuberculosis and had to go to Galen for 6 months. His mom had 7 of her 8 children still at home to feed in 1955, my dad had always apprenticed with my grandfather at his job, for no pay. Jim was a head filer at the mill he worked at, my dad stepped up and took over the job for my grandfather. Most adult men could not have done the job but my dad did, he also came home ever week and handed over the paycheck to my grandmother and never asked for more than what he had always had a home and food to eat. When my grandfather got well, he came home to his job, my father went out and got a head filer job of his own, in a different town. My dad worked for the next 40 years and only missed 11 days of work, the 11 days that he had a heart attack and spent time in the hospital.

He worked hard and when he was home he tried to give to us of himself.  He could be a hard task master, he expected you to work hard, to do things right and not short changes anyone including yourself. He didn't always know the things that went on in the house when he was gone. My mom tried to not over burden him, but alot of the time he would have spankings to give out when he came home, mom always sent you to bed to await dad and a spanking. My dad had a plaque that he hung on the wall for as long as I can remember, I have it now. The plaque reads, "the best thing a father can do for his children is to love their mother." He has lived his life by that modo, he taught all of his children to do the same. We all love our spouses, and support them. I know that I have always loved Poppie more than anyone, and that includes my children, there have been times that they needed me more but I always love him first and most. I belief in my heart that by loving him more I loved them the best I could. My fathers example always lead in this belief, besides, after the kids are gone you don't want to look across the table and wonder who the heck the person you are drink coffee with is. I have never had to wonder, working on your spousal relationship, staying on the same page and loving your kids together has always worked for Poppie and I.

My dad helped Poppie get his first job after we got married. Poppie had been raised in a whole different kind of family, mostly broken and really dysfunctional so he had no real concepts of work ethic, family of a Godly life. He did learn as he went along, and my dad helped him in many ways become the man he is now. Poppie always worked hard to feed our family, he worked at the mill and worked are home, sometimes he didn't get to spend lots of time with the kids, and now regrets the lost time. He doesn't always remember that he did the best he could at the time. Our son Bug always saw Poppie as not being manly as a teenager, he had lots of logger friends that had manly logger dads.  They partied hard, were loud and fought hard. Bug thought that that was a man, he and Poppie went through alot of years with this between them. When Bug became a father he tried the hard ass dad routine and discovered that maybe the kind of dad, his dad had been to him, was a better choice for him. Yes, he can still have bouts of the strictly manly dad with his kids but mostly he loves them and loves their mother, not a bad tradition to share with his kids.

I even think the Poppie has been a good example for Son, he asks Poppie for advise and seeks his counsel regularly; so the love of a father in law for his son in law is also being continued in the new generation too. I don't pretend that my family is unique, I like to think we are just a loving Montana family.... tomorrow.

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