My Father, My Dad Who Raised Me
The Man Who Raised Me
Yes, I know it is not Father's Day, and of course in a few more weeks that will change, but please allow me to express my heart about a man who was not perfect in any way, but I appreciated and loved him just the same.
My father imparted so much into my sisters and I that he probably was not even aware that he was doing so. He was just being himself with big dreams that he never really talked about. He was such a thinker like myself that you could sense it. He would sit in a chair and just think without saying hardly anything.
My father loved listening to church services held on the radio, on Sunday mornings, especially a service led by a Pastor of the Rose of Sharon Church on the Westside of Chicago. His passion for music is where I got my passion for music from. He could sit, listen and sing to some of the great blues legends such as Bobby Blue Bland, Howling Wolf, B.B. King, Muddy Waters, and the list goes on. He loved this one instrumental titled, "Green Onions", and so did I.
He never had much to say concerning us girls, he left that part to my mom who was the disciplinarian and the go to person. He kinda wished that at least one of us were a boy instead of or in addition to us. He had dreams that possibly a boy could help him fulfill and he stated so on occasions.
Dad was such a happy go lucky fellow who wasn't the argumentive type and actually liked to talk about the things he knew. Of course, back in that time, children were seen and not heard so we experienced most of it through his interaction with his friends when they came by the house or with my granny and mom.
I should have written about my heavenly father who raised me up to be the inspiring writer that I am but I wanted to talk about the man who married my mother; the one who physically raised me; the man who worked hard for a living so that we could have a decent place to stay and attend schools that taught Christian morals; the man who beat all odds that life could possibly throw at him and even before his death, he still tried to give fatherly advice to an adult woman, (mainly me) who tried to think she knew better but really didn't.
Big Rigs for Construction Workers
My Father, the Hard Hat Worker
My father was a big, strong man prepared to take on any manual labor job that came his way. He was pretty good at what he did although he never went to school for it but he knew all of the tools to the trade.
My Father would rise up early in the morning, before the chickens to prepare for work. He worked a distance from where we lived, so he would fix his morning drink, hot tea, which was also my favorite drink. He very seldom drank coffee.
He wore the same sets of work clothes; a blue set, black, green and a brown set which needed repair from time to time because by him being a big man, any wrong turn could mean losing a button or the backside of his pants. He also wore the famous hardhat with his work gloves and sometimes overalls and of course work boots. Once we started to get older, the repair job was passed down to us girls from my mom having to deal with it every week.
I had a respect for my father because he took pride in his work. Every slab of concrete that he help to lay, was heavily guarded by himself and others to keep mischievous children and adults from trying to leave a lasting and somewhat permanent imprint behind.
I remember one night, my father had finished a job and was tending to it for a portion of the night. We were positioned on the back seat of his 1969 Cadillac, taking naps here and there to past the time away. He brought us chicken to fill our bellies as we continued to sit and wait for the slab of concrete to dry. We were kept warm by a heat blower that was also utilized to expedite the amount of time it took for the concrete to dry.
My father also took side jobs, repairing neighbors sidewalks and repaving friends and others property who would warrant his services. My father even built his own garage.
He was such a trusted employee that he could borrow equipment from the company that he worked for to do his side jobs without ever the threat of it not being returned or rental fees. Expensive equipment at that. He was also referred out a lot when work at his site was slow.
When Dad's office is at home
Kids come to Work day
Ever visited your Father's or favorite male figure's worksite or job?
My Father, The Provider
My father always brought his money home to my momma. He would just put the check up on the dresser and she would take care of paying the bills and the times when she didn't he would remind her to do so because he was a spender. He always tried to make sure that the bills were being paid even when money was short. My father always went to work, never refusing any offers of work to secure a roof over our heads. Although, during the winter seasons, money was a little tight because he didn't work as much. Construction work was his thing, his niche and drive.
Sometimes my father drank, but it was more like social drinking. He would never overdo it because his ability to work would have been impaired. He always kept himself prepared to go to work which is probably one of the reasons why he didn't lay in heavy on the booze. He was committed to his job even at times when his checks were late and the weather inclement.
My mom had stop working early on to care for a family member and he even took care of her during it all, not complaining about her going back, he had accustomed himself to doing for the family. He was a real provider.
Who was the Real Santa, My Dad
Fun Time With Dad
Enjoying Life with Dad
The Father that was Present
No, my father never won Dad of the Year award or even came close but he was the Santa in my Clause, The Easter in my Bunny and he was alright with me.
Christmas was always special with the scent of sweet baked goods and pine tree aroma saturating the air. When I found out at the age of twelve that my Dad was the Santa with the toys, it kinda spoiled the element of surprise for me. I understood then how come I didn't always get what I wanted. Amazing, getting undeserved toys for free and still not satisfied.
My father would drive us around on a Saturday afternoon to places where his old friends use to dwell and where he and my mom use to live before my sisters and I were born. During the drive, I would memorize those areas in my head. They seemed like memorials in my mind.
I always felt secure in my father's car. I remember the very year when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated, which was a very scary time for me.
Everywhere on the Westside of Chicago appeared to be on fire and I knew then that hell was not a place for me. I was terrified at the horror of the uprising that resulted in areas where we shopped and use to live being engulfed in flames.
I was glad when our dad drove us back home because it was safe for us; no smoke, fire or rioting.
On my seventh birthday, I wanted to stay up later to finish watching tv with my two favorite people, but my mom and dad said go to bed and I didn't want to go so he called himself spanking me which probably hurt him more than me, for me to go to bed.
My father always came home to my momma. I never remember a time when he did not come home, even during the stormy times of their marriage, he always came home.
I remember him taking us to Buckingham Fountain during the Easter season, downtown Chicago and the amusement park called Riverview, which used to be right in the middle of the city. We had loads of fun and not to mention Navy Pier which was not loaded with what is there today but it truly was a Pier back in the day. We also took long drives into the country to pick apples off of trees and visit markets to buy produce. He wanted some land in the country but that fell through.
My father really thought he could cook. He loved rice and beans but mainly rice because he would do his own version of fried rice. I loved for him to fix fried rice and he loved to fix it. He also specialized in fried rabbit with gravy and hog fries in gravy. (Since I have been grown, I do not like hog fries and am not tempted to buy rabbit.)
Caution! Worker Ahead
Working from Sun to Sun
Varied Rolls of Construction Workers
My Father, The Leader
I know that my father wanted his own business because of the many side offers he received and accepted. He hardly ever turned down opportunities to do what he was created to do. His expertise put him in business without him ever officiating it. Everybody knew him to be the Cement Man; "The Bob the Builder of the Hood."
He would orchestrate some of the kids from the community to do little odd and end things for him.
Everybody knew his name even people he didn't know or was familiar with.
He was the voice of our family. His voice still speaks volumes, even beyond his death.
Celebrating the Life of My Father
Just three days short of my father's 70th birthday, he passed away. His life was not the way he wanted it to be. He even expected us to be far beyond what we settled for in life.
My father really wanted to retire from his labors which he finally did and some time later, he retired from his labors of life permanently.
These words below were the words that I had printed on his obituary:
"You taught me how to rise up early and really work hard. You showed me how a man should leave his kindred and cling unto his wife.
You laid foundations for a living and upon every foundation erected a building.
These were some of the things that you showed me in life.
Just the other day, I remembered your words, "to get out and stretch your legs, when travelling on a long journey", but where you left off is how I began to lay foundations based upon God's dear son. To build according to the gospel of Jesus Christ because He said, "I am the way, the truth and the life."
Thank you Dad for instilling those values. Thank God for Momma Georgia, who prayed the prayer of faith for us every night.
If I had one more word that you could hear, it would be, "I love you and thanks for everything."
You raise me up
You remain Special in my Heart
Final Thoughts on Fatherhood
I know times have changed along with people and their individual lifestyles have gone in so many different directions; and those directions are affecting our children. Children for the most part are no longer the center of focus long before they are born.
We make decisions as parents to embrace destructive lifestyles that result in dysfunction in raising our children. We try to live in such a way that is out of the will of God, then we wonder why our children turn to substance, breaking the law and running away while we put strange flesh before them.
It was never God's will for parents to be single outside of death. He wanted a man to cleave unto his wife, come out from among his kindred and go in the direction that God had ordained for him.
Father's were God's choice. Fathers were the leaders of households as God's pattern and design. Father's were supposed to impart wisdom into their children as the ways of the Lord not man. Father's were the original leaders of the land such as Adam the first man who knew his wife and conceived and bore two sons before the fall and more after the fall.
True fathers protect their families not abuse them. True fathers do not abandon their responsibility for their children nor do they neglect them. True fathers do not compromise their values that will affect the lives of their children and this is my final take on fatherhood, you do not have to be perfect to be a father just be one.
LifeSiteNews.com Concensus on families without Fathers
Life Site News.com,
has indicated that households worldwide, headed by single parents, from the 1960s until 2010 has doubled. This information was obtained from a 2010 Census.
The Washington Times
wrote that two parent households decreased by 1.2 million while in the last ten years, in 50 states, single households with children in America increased by 160,000. They also stated that 15 million American children are being raised without a father.
Studies suggest that Children without fathers are more than likely to grow up in poverty, develop social and emotional problems and become delinquent more so than children in poor homes of two parent dwellings. The case was especially true for black children where the increase of poverty was more present with single mothers.
These stats donot have to be the growing trend indicative of any race but fathers must take a stand and be accounted for, especially among black communities or God will hold you accountable for your absenteeism.