In a normal month of June, Amy and I would have driven home from Gettysburg today and I’d already be missing the place. We did not travel to Gettysburg this year, due to the world-wide pandemic, but we’ll be back sometime in the future. The entire world must get healthy before it can happen, but we’ll be back.
When you become disappointed over something, it is easy to develop tunnel vision. What you see and feel is limited to how you perceive the world is treating you. Not going to Gettysburg to attend the Civil War Institute at Gettysburg College and not exploring the tremendous history on the battlefield were major disappointments. We didn’t eat lunch at the Garry Owens Pub or teach the kids at the local Dairy Queen how to have a good time. My tunnel vision left me unhappy, so I whined, moaned and complained for a week.
|With Amy on a dinner date.|
I don’t know why my wife Amy puts up with me.
But with Father’s Day on the horizon, the ole tunnel vision started widening again and the resulting perspective stopped the pity parade. A lot of things have happened since the last Father’s Day. Through it all, both the good and bad, it was Amy’s remarkable strength that powered the engine that moved us through the last year, her intellect that guided us around the potholes we found (they have a lot of those here in Ohio) and her sparkling wit that made the whole thing worth doing.
A medical test last summer resulted in Amy getting a frightening diagnosis. That led to surgery, recovery, treatment and more recovery. And she just kept plugging away. She had to do this? Okay. Something else was next? Okay. We had much earlier planned a birthday party and both of our children visited to celebrate Amy’s special day. Amy loved it. An old and treasured friend happened to visit in the middle of all that and it was him, not me, who drove Amy to her first treatment. Amy cruised through the long treatment protocol as though it was a series of trips to her hair salon. It was almost as though she was making her way through an adventure and learning new and interesting things as she went.
Learning is something Amy does constantly and that makes sense. She taught in the primary grades for 42 years and through all of those years, she never stopped looking for new ways to help her students learn. She’s retired now but she still hasn’t stopped learning. New stuff pleases her so she keeps looking for it.
Our kids, Sean and Regan, learned most of life’s important lessons from Amy. Try not to be too stunned when you read this: The family teacher did most of the teaching to the family.
|Sean and Regan|
The kids will call Sunday to wish a happy Father’s Day and I will joke that I couldn’t have done it without them, which is true. But I could not have done it without Amy, either. Would not have wanted to. The fact is that I didn’t lift a hand to help raise our kids. Amy did it all and she has always done things the right way. Our kids are walking, talking evidence that their mother did a marvelous job of creating a warm, loving environment at home. Both kids are smart, strong, warm and funny like their Mom.
Father’s Day is really just another way to say, “Thank you, Amy. I love you and cherish our marriage and everything that has come from it.”
I admire the hell out of my wife and I’ll spend Father’s Day with her. Gettysburg can wait. Amy’s in Ohio with me and everything else is fine.