My father is not a great man. He is not extraordinary. He is typical and he veers toward the scope of normalcy you would see of the most mundane and average of men. He lives day to day, working, no longer working, retired, learning, fathering, spousing, human-ing. He is kind, unassuming, calm, joyous, graceful, yet softened still with age, wrinkled with his own hard share of life. Yet, he and I both know there were mistakes to be had, mistakes that unfolded, and he can acknowledges he was not perfect, as can I of myself because of him. And for whatever reason, I can love this man with all of me, more than I can of anything else, and that includes myself, knowing he was extraordinary to me by being ordinary, but almost always trying his best under duress. His character was consistent and his love was not showy. His absorption of a pernicious situation hindered him for a time being, and as with most things, it gave way to a death of sorts, with something new and effulgent to followed. It made room for a surge of something more flitting and more fitting. For the first time as an adult at the age of 27, quite a few years back, I saw my dad finally happy and it made me full.
I was just thinking about William the BeeKeeper and its ethos and mission, whether I am doing enough, if there is any impact felt and what is actually unfolding. Sometimes I feel exhausted. Then on Boxing day, my father told me about the grandfather I never got to meet, who owned a custom mens suit shop in Taiwan. And it unfolded. My father’s timing is always impeccable.
That is how I love my father. It doesn’t take much to fall in love with a great man, but for me, it doesn’t take much to fall in love with someone this hidden. I see him clearly, in what he does and what he does without notice. That is my love for a father, for being an ordinary man, but being the best ordinary man I know.
To all the great men, large and small.