By Owner/Editor Dave Pearce.
Father’s Day is not my favorite holiday. As a matter of fact, I don’t have a favorite holiday. I pretty much dislike all of them about the same. I am the one who always volunteered to work the holidays so those who do enjoy them could have that time off to do whatever it is they do. But I suppose that’s an issue I will have to work through when I get some extra time. That could be a while. However, as Father’s Day approached this year, it gave me some time to reflect.
First of all, I almost wasn’t a father at all. Beyond 30 and still single, I was looking for the perfect situation. I had decided that stepchildren and dealing with former spouses and four sets of grandparents just wasn’t going to be for me. I realized that my choices were limited and I would have to find the “perfect” situation. I had no idea what that situation would involve but somehow, I think I managed to do it.
For those who know my history, you know that Connie and I met about three years after she had lost her first husband in a tragic automobile accident. Little did I know that my “perfect” situation was about to become reality.
We met through friends at Mount Zion Church. I didn’t go there looking for a wife and I’m sure that Connie, attending a church of 30 to 40 regulars on Sunday morning, wasn’t counting on finding a husband there. But sometimes that’s just how things work. Venus lines up perfectly with Mars, Neptune and Jupiter and bam. Next thing you know things work out.
We didn’t date long until we decided that this was the perfect situation for both of us. And although I can’t describe our marriage as “perfect,” name me someone who can. I went from a 33-year-old bachelor to a husband and a father, all in the same day. As a matter of fact, Connie told me right up front that I was marrying not only her, but also her son and my stepson, Eric.
There have been some rocky times along the way but somehow, with the correct attitude adjustments on both of our parts, we have managed to make it for 23 years. Eric is grown and living near Lexington. We made it through his growing up years without me killing him and without him hating me. It was not always easy as I grew up with stern discipline that often involved physical reminders of what I had done wrong. I had to learn a new way to do things. No, I wasn’t always perfect but we made it. By the way, neither of the other two were perfect either. However, like the old song says, “They’re close enough to perfect for me.”
Besides some of my other issues, I’m not the world’s greatest communicator when it comes to talking about things. Hey, I can sit down with a pad and paper and spill my guts but to sit down and try and tell someone how and why I feel the way I do, I’m just not very good at it. Who knows how many pages of paper and ink have been written that no one except me ever saw. But hey, we all have our own ways of dealing with things. That’s mine.
I would have to describe my relationship with Eric as far better than the average father/son relationship between people who are blood relatives. I believe he has a grip on my personality and I think I have learned to read him very well. He is not a man of a lot of words and neither am I. Perhaps that puts me in the correct business. Because much like nouns in certain sentences, a lot of our conversations are not vocalized but are “understood.”
For example, when you tell someone “give me the remote for the television,” the subject of the conversation is understood. The unspoken yet clearly understood subject is “You!” “You give me the remote for the television.”
It has been rare that I have told Eric how I have felt about things and it has been equally rare that he has done the same. Yet, when it comes right down to it, I think the feelings are “understood.” It often goes without saying the relationship we have. I know it often frustrates his mother because so many times, it is in the make-up of a woman to verbalize everything. With men, I just don’t think it is usually necessary. If you enjoy being around each other and the desire is there to do things together and you plan another event about as soon as one is over, I don’t think it is always necessary to say “I had a wonderful time and I would like to do this again…say, next Tuesday.” A typical conversation between Eric and I after an enjoyable day on the golf course is “What day do you have off next week?” From that, he draws the conclusion that I have enjoyed the day and if he has too, then he will tell me what days works for the following week. If it hasn’t been that great a day, all he has to say is “Let me get back with you on that.” That’s my cue that either it hasn’t been that great a day or he legitimately has concerns about whether he can be off on the specified day. Either way, I respect his thoughts and no one had to have their feelings hurt.
I have come to the conclusion that it is just a “man” thing. I have a very similar relationship with my younger brother in Texas. We can go several weeks or even months without talking but when the phone rings, the feelings are “understood” and we pick up right where we left off.”
So Eric, I know it hasn’t been a perfect ride. But since, because of circumstances beyond our control, your mom and I were never able to give you a sibling, You’re stuck. I’m the only dad you are ever going to have. And when you are away in Lexington, I use the “kids” I meet through the newspaper on the athletic playing fields as surrogate children. And even though it is often easier for me to verbalize with them since I don’t have to go home with them, many of our relationships are “understood.”
And, Eric, just in case I didn’t tell you “Happy Father’s Day” and since you didn’t tell me either, the best possible thing happened. You took me out for 18 holes of enjoyable golf. I enjoyed the day and the wish was “understood.”
By Owner/Editor Dave Pearce.
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