My Father and Me

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November 6th 2012  |  2  |  Category: Children , Fiction , Inspirational , Moral , True Stories  |  Author: Carlos Salinas  |  682 views

I remember being five years old and walking through the forest by our house with my dad. It was filled with adventure and seemed to go on forever. It was always an adventure! I always felt safe because I knew my dad was there if I faced any real danger.
“Why is grass green, dad?” I remember asking.
“Because it has something called chlorophyll. It helps plants make their own food.”
“Like we make sandwiches?”
“Ha-ha, similar in a way,” he rubbed my head.
I came across a dead bird and was very curious as to why he died and why the ants were all over him.
“What happened to him?” I asked.
“His life ended.”
“Because everyone’s life has to end sometime.” My father was very calm talking about a completely new idea to me.
“Us too?” I asked in a fearful tone.
“Everyone, son, you and me, that’s life. But it will not happen for a long time.” He smiled and hugged me.
I felt an ugly empty feeling in the pit of my stomach. My dad was my hero and I had just learned that my hero would one day leave me. How was a child supposed to react to that?
I remember asking him questions about everything: why birds flew instead of ran, who named the animals, why were trees so tall and why they lived longer than us, why fish couldn’t talk, and why some animals died when others lived. I guess I was already thinking life’s most meaningful questions in a kid’s innocent ways.
My father took all these questions with noble patience explaining that each animal had a role in the world and they just knew what to do.

“They just know?” I asked.
“That’s right; just like you knew how to cry when you were little, and just how mom knew what to do to make you stop crying.”
“I love Mom.”
“I love Mom, too.”
I thought for a bit, just staring at the grass and the river. I saw a flower growing by the river bank and it reminded me of a girl at school that always wore a flower in her hair. “What about girls?”
He chuckled, “What about them?”
“Why are they here?” Looking back now I realize what a silly boy I was, ha-ha.
“Ha-ha, one day you will see why, but what makes you ask?”
“There’s a girl that always wears a flower in her hair at school. She is very…”
“Pretty?” he asked. My father had figured me out.
“Yes,” I said kicking rocks into the river, avoiding his eyes.
“So she’s pretty special, huh?” he asked kicking bigger rocks into the river with me.
“I guess,” I responded, trying to sound indifferent. “How do I show her?”
My father thought for some time and kicked a few more rocks into the river. He finally spoke, “How would you show Mom?”
“Buy her flowers?”
“You can do that, or you can just pick ‘em,” he smiled as he answered.
I understood. Now, as a grown man, I can see all that my father taught me. I would not be the man –the husband and father – I am now if it had not been for him. The other day my son asked me what we would do together that day, to which I replied, “I know a forest that is filled with adventure and it seems to go on forever.”


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2 Responses to My Father and Me

  1. Avatar of Ami Ami says:

    Nice story. I like it and enjoyed it a lot.

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