I have written that my relationship with my Dad was not an easy one. However, I took up the challenge to write happy posts this week, and I do have a lot of wonderful memories of Dad while I was growing up.
My Dad was a pharmacist and in my early years, he worked for a drug company. We lived in Saskatoon, and his territory was Northern Saskatchewan. He would be gone three weeks a month during the week and home on weekends.
Dad got a transfer to British Columbia when I was seven, and he no longer had to travel. It was nice having him home in the evenings, and it meant that he wasn’t just spending his weekends off at home resting. We did things as a family.
When I was about 12, Dad bought a pharmacy. He had quit his sales job and was working for the owner who decided it was time to retire. My parents thought long and hard making the difficult decision to own a business.
The store had a pharmacy at the back and then general merchandise throughout. My mother ran the front shop, and when I turned 16, I worked there too. I started at 14 on Sunday’s with my Dad. I would clean and stock shelves for a “small fee”. I thought it was fun. When I became a full employee, it was harder. I always call my Dad my best and hardest boss. He was trying to teach me as both an employee and a daughter. The business and personal values he instilled in me during that time will stay with me forever.
After Dad bought the store, which included candy, of course, he would give me a heart box of chocolates for Valentine’s day with a note saying I would always be his little valentine. The year I went to boarding school he sent a humungous heart box in my Mom’s monthly care package to me. She always said I inherited his sweet tooth. Sadly, I have also inherited his type II diabetes.
I think the best memory I have of my Dad is one my friend Dee reminded me of when I wrote my Dear Dad post on his birthday. I have said that culinary school was challenging. I almost quit but toughed it out until the end. Dad was living on his own and wasn’t driving much, especially into Vancouver, so Hubby went to pick him up and bring him to my graduation ceremony. Dee was there as well. I had made up my mind that I wouldn’t pass and was calling this my completion day instead of graduation day. And this was totally fine with me. There have been a lot of things that I haven’t completed thanks to my mental and physical health.
We wouldn’t find out our status until we were handed our envelope by our instructors and opened it up. I opened mine to see “This certifies that Lydia has completed…”. and I was a little sad but then went back to that place where it was okay. At that moment, I felt a tapping on my shoulder. It was my friend, Pablo, saying “It’s a Diploma!” I looked up, and sure enough, it was!
I ran around the back of the room and got my family’s attention I held up the diploma and excitedly said, “I passed”. My Dad was in tears. When it was over, and I met up with them he hugged me tighter than normal and told me how proud he was of me. Then the tears started rolling down MY face. My Dad rarely ever used “proud” and my name in the same sentence. This is by far my best memory of my Dad.
They say you should always focus on the good times when someone has passed away. Now that I have dealt with all the bad ones, there is more room to see the good in our relationship.
Happy Father’s Day Dad,