Friday, February 1, 2013

The Last Time I Said I Love You

The last time I said I love you was 45 minutes ago when hanging up from a phone call with my Dad. My back-up yahoo account spammed everyone and he called to make sure the email I just sent was spam. It felt so nice to get a call at work even though I knew it was about spam. But really I think maybe something (maybe the universe or the hacker in Lithuania) told me I needed to talk to my Dad. I spent my lunch break on the phone with him and in his usual way, he asks me "What's going on?"  I start everyone one of these answers with "Not much" which eventually avalanches through my soul and before I know it, that guard I always have up is broken and it's snowing emotions.

My Dad knows me in a way that no one else does. He doesn't know me how my friends know me or even how my husband knows me, but in a way that pierces straight through my core and speaks to that kid inside me that is still struggling so much. And if there is a parent I take after, it is definitely him. We are both storytellers, both sensitive, both the oldest child (bossy by nature), both curious, both have a temper, and both struggle with so many of the same internal road blocks. When I lament about my life decisions over the last decade and how I've gotten really good at managing other people's lives and yet I still don't know what I want to do with mine, he says, "Me neither!" Which makes us both laugh. "It's the journey," he says and reminds me that it's all out of my hands anyway. For so long I've tried to live life on my terms, but the truth is, the only way to live is on life's terms.

When I was 26, I received this HUGE medical bill and I thought debt agencies were coming after me for $10,000 and I was hysterical, scared, angry and obsessively looking into anything I could to protect myself. My dad had said to me, "Sweetie, you gotta learn to roll with the punches." In other words, it was not the end of the world. I could also ask for help in understanding the bill and I could also negotiate for myself. My reaction was to fight, defend, push back. When really the best thing to do was to not react and take it a step at a time. In the end, the bill went away with the gracious help of a receptionist at the doctor's office and a helpful insurance agent.

When we hung up today, I felt better than I had all week. We always sign off with "Love you" but sometimes that also means "Thank you."

2 comments:

akl @livelafelove.com said...

My dad has this supreme power of breaking down all of my emotional barriers just by saying "are you ok?". it's something about his tone of voice that basically melts me into a puddle who needs her daddy!

Lindsey said...

Totally!! It's all in the voice.