You're never too old to need your parents, even if you think you are.
And when they start to get older, you wonder if they are able to help. If they can't remember where they put their keys, can they really grab my groceries? If they struggle to drive, can they really give me advice on my investments?
And when we start to get older, shouldn't we not need our parents as much? Shouldn't I be able to figure this out on my own?
Even if your parent is getting up there, or not here anymore, you will always need them. You'll always want them.
Today, there was an atmospheric river. For us non-meterological folks, that means it's dumping rain. Buckets and buckets and buckets. I dropped my youngest at preschool in my vehicle, and decided to drop K off at kindergarten right after. Why walk if the car was perfectly fine?
We sat and chilled in the kindergarten parking lot for half an hour before school. We played I Spy, touched all the buttons in the car and had a pretend race (picture a 5 year old grabbing the steering wheel and turning it as far and fast as he can). Dropped him off as the bell rang and hopped back in the car, turned the key and....
Battery died because our Veggie Tales music apparently took too much energy!
Cue the call. You know the call. We've all made the call. It's to the person who is speed dial 1 on your phone.
"Dad, are you home? I need you."
The man for whom I manage finances, for whom I make decisions, jumped right to the rescue. His brain often functions against his desires, but his daughter's need trumps it all. He has always been speed dial 1.
In the last 8 years, Dad has had challenge after challenge come over him. Life has been anything but easy and some days, not even kind. Some days, we've switched roles. Advice given in unconventional directions. Transitioning from him advocating and protecting me, to me getting to love him in doing the same.
But what hasn't changed is that he is still my Dad. He still answers every call, every text. He teaches ("Red connects to red, Rayel"), rescues and protects. He's my first call (sorry Adam!) even if I know he can't always help...but he always does have advice. And atmospheric river and traumatic brain injury be damned, nothing was going to stop him from helping me today. That's what my Dad does. And he's the best of Dads.
I'm 34 and in many ways, I take care of my Dad. But I need him just as much. Maybe that's it...we need each other. It changes as we both grow and age. As responsibilities shift, as more family members get added to the mix. But more than needing his hands or his head, I need his heart. I need his love. And of that, he freely, freely gives. And that happens regardless of brain function, heart function or crazy weather.
I am truly the luckiest daughter in the world.
I'd love to hear about your parents! How have they shown you love, or how do you wish they'd show you love?