Grandma’s Voice: A Father’s Love

In the words of Grandma, please enjoy our next installment of Grandma’s Voice.

The single greatest thing a dad can do for his children is to love their mother. -John Wooden

I witnessed an exceptional love between a man and a woman for 39 years. My father loved my mom and I adored him for that. My mom was not always easy to love.

My dad demonstrated his love everyday. A gentle touch; secret notes of affection left in undisclosed places; working all day and still managing to do the dishes every night. He defined my view of a man.

My dad would help my brothers with boyish pursuits but he never left me out. His standards did not recognize sex. I was held accountable just like my brothers. “I got you baby; you can do this; always trust in yourself first; you are destined for greatness.”

Dad was an engineer, one of the first black engineers hired by a big three automotive company. Regardless of the racial prejudice he encountered he was never too busy for us or to help in the advancement of others. He would listen patiently and intently to the daily concerns expressed by mom; he helped around the house; he was at every PTA conference. No matter how busy his day was, he never forgot to tuck us in and remind us to say our prayers.

Dad passed when I was 31 years old. I was devastated. I didn’t think I could go on but I had three children that depended on me. I cried for days. I prayed even longer. One day in a dream, I swore I heard my dad’s voice, “You can do this baby; you are destined for greatness.”

Now, I am a witness to the loving relationship of another man and woman. My son-in-law is exceptional. He plays with his children; he does the dishes; he helps with the housework; he bathes the girls and he works every day. Last evening, as they returned from date night, I heard him singing rhythm and blues to his wife. My daughter is surrounded by love and for that, my heart beams.

My dad is still smiling and protecting his family.


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