Monday 22 October 2012

Art Harrison

I made a comment on facebook today that it was fifteen years ago that my dad passed away and like probably everyone that has lost someone that they love, I think of him on a daily basis. My world grew an empty space on that October 22nd and I have had to fill it with memories that fade and grow depending on my memory at any given time.

My good friend asked what traits I had inherited from him. I didn’t answer her on facebook, but I will try to in this blog tonight, unless it happens to get hijacked by some errant thought. It is a good question and I really have to give it some thought. Of course it is the easy thing to pick out his good qualities and just say those are the ones that I picked up on.

I guess if I am to be honest, both dad and I have/had a temper. I can get angry and so could he, in fact he was known to fly a plane over Germany and drop bombs. The most that I have done is toss a chair into the kitchen wall or make toothpicks out of a 2 X 4 with a hammer. He frightened me when I was a kid, and sadly, my kids were frightened by me. I don’t remember being a terror, but I must have been. Dad showed disappointment when we didn’t live up to his expectations, and I do the same I guess.

I have never felt as bad as the time that I was caught shop lifting (age 8) and the family court judge told dad that he was a bad parent. I felt that same disappointment once for the same reason. It is a part of life, and we move on.

I have always had the feeling that dad favoured my brother more than he did me when we were kids. My brother was very athletic, as was dad, and I quite simply was not. Dad loved sports and I just don’t get why you or he would waste hours of time watching other people play a sport. Dad would watch any sport at any time. I would avoid watching any sport at any time, so I guess that is sort of the same.

Dad was always ready to lend a hand whenever it was needed, and he was quite handy. I am willing to lend a hand as well, but I doubt that I am as handy as he was. I don’t remember dad ever getting help from anyone, although I am sure that it happened. I have no qualms about asking for help, but it is rare that I need the help.

I would like to think that like dad, I spent my life providing a loving home for my kids and hopefully they left the home like I did with wonderful memories. I don’t remember dad saying he loved me very much, but I think that is more a testament of the times and how men were expected to act. I hope that I have told my kids that I love them enough. I remember one time when dad told me that I was a good father. That was pretty high praise indeed.

Dad and I both have a kind of quirky sense of humour and I think people instinctively would like us because they could sense that we like them. Dad had the ability to make strangers laugh and I have been known to do the same. We could both make our friends laugh too. We both love our grandkids, and could sit for hours watching them play and learn. I just wish that dad could have met Hurricane and Tornado.

I can answer this question. I am my dad I suppose. He is the yard stick that I use for what a good man should be, what a good husband should be, what a good father should be, what a good friend should be, what a good worker should be and what a good human being should be. He was loved by those close to him and loved them in return.

I strive every day to be like him and hopefully in the years to come if someone asks one of my kids what traits they have of mine, they will be able to say they are a better person for having had me in their lives, just as I am a better person for having had Art Harrison in my life.

1 comment:

  1. Your Dad sounds like he was a wonderful man. You are very lucky to have had such a good role model. And it sounds like you inherited a lot of good stuff from him.