I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren't trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.
International Super Spy
I am one of those who is lucky to have an amazing father. An additional stroke of luck: we have a strong relationship. In the past and present, I admire my Dad. He is the best role model, and I continually aspire to be like him. While neither of us believe that personalities are “created” — I notice some similarities.
He may or may not read this post, but you are reading it now. If you are lucky enough to have a father, spend time with him. When I was younger, I wanted to be many things. Top of mind was being an international super spy, like James Bond. Above all though, I wanted to be like my Dad.
The same traits I aspired to have from these movie heroes were the same traits I saw in my father: strength, wisdom, courage, and patience.
I remember watching “Chamber of Secrets” with the infamous snake battle when I was younger. My Dad was leaving for work one day, and I asked if he was going to “fight big snakes?”.
“I am,” he replied, and grabbed my toy wooden sword out of the umbrella vase. He could tell I was awestruck, and that I wanted to battle snakes for a living too.
It wasn’t because I thought fighting snakes was awesome. It was because my Dad did it.
I may not be a super patient person, but when I feel that I’m crossing the line, I think of the patience my Dad had for me when I was an annoying little kid (and now, as an annoying little adult).
When I lose perspective, I think about the travels and trips that my Dad organized. As my Dad would attest to, this is something he did really right. I cherish what we call “adventure trips” and I’m eagerly looking forward to the next one. I gave it some thought: I literally would not trade these experiences for billions of dollars in cash. If I died tomorrow, these memories would be enough for me to consider my life full — any more is just a bonus.
Experiencing new cultures and parts of the world in an authentic and curious manner is something that so utterly shaped my worldview, completely thanks to my Dad. I think that genuine curiosity is one of his best qualities, and something that has always inspired me to challenge my most fortified ideas.
When I feel weak or lacking in courage, I’m reminded of the brave face my Dad has held during times of hardship. I see a person led by selflessness, duty, and a strong desire to help and protect his family. When I have a family of my own, I hope to be even just half of the man my father is.
Love you Dad.