Sunday, July 12, 2009

A New Chapter

(dad and grandson, Ry Guy)
For my DAD

My dad is a fireman.  He has been for over 30 years - and it is through his career he taught me what it means to have a passion and a work ethic.  I have never come across anyone in life who whole heartedly loves what they do like my dad.  As a child, (and still to this day) my friends know my dad as "Fireman Mike" because he was the fireman who toured all the schools and educated children in fire safety.  My dad defines passion.

I have always noticed the thrill he gets when the tones go off for a call.  The look of determination on his face, the spark in his eye.  Its incredible.  For my dad, its never been about money.  He's never worried how much he made or compared it to other careers.  In fact, my dad has been in the position to retire for a couple of years now, but he hasn't - because he still loves going to work.

I found out this week that my dads last day is in the first week of August.  It will be an emotional one for him and my entire family.  In fact, it puts tears in my eyes just thinking about it.  Fireman Mike is a symbol in my life - something I have looked up to forever, and I don't know anything different than my dad being gone 10 days a month to do what he loves and provide for our family.

He's the bravest guy I know.  I gleam with pride when I think about all he has accomplished in his years there.  You know, he is well into his 50's and he is still the most athletic, driven, powerful man i've come across in life.   I don't know how he will do with this retiring thing - even with the thousands of other things he does in the community (see here).  He is a busy body. 

He still makes me feel like that little girl with big blue eyes and chunky baby arms reaching for her daddy, her hero - I don't think I will ever grow out of that stage.  

Since my dad has been on my mind for the last few days - I thought I would share.  I find myself having moments selfishly not wanting my dad to get any older or move on from this part of his life.  Have any of you gone through something like this?  Please share.

30 comments:

Lindsay said...

Aw, that's so sweet! My dad is retiring soon but I couldn't be happier for him because he's moving on to better things!

Kelly said...

What??? I can't believe this...and I just talked to you yesterday!!! i'm in shock....

he's such a wonderful guy :)

The Little Jewelry Box said...

I know what you mean! It is such a comfort zone to still think of parents as the same people they were/doing what they did as we grew up. It's hard.:) Sounds like you have a wonderful dad though... :)!

Brunch at Saks said...

This is such a sweet post! What an amazing Dad you have- the community was blessed to have had him for so many years! :) XOXO

Belle said...

Sounds like you have an incredible dad darling!!
I know it is daunting, its like a brand new chapter of both yours and his life! He is lucky to have a very supportive daughter like you! xxx

Farah said...

that is so sweet! I think all girls almost never grow out of the 'my daddy is my hero' phase. so lovely!

Heather said...

This was a really sweet post! New chapters can be just as exciting as the one just closed. Maybe he needs more grandkids? ;)

Brown Girl said...

That is so awesome, your dad sounds super cool!

bananas. said...

your dad sounds amazing. like one of those awesome dads on TV. this is such a sweet post.

brooke said...

aww...this is the sweetest post!! your dad sounds like an amazing man!!

Girl With The Golden Touch said...

This is so sweet. x

Leslee said...

Oh dear... Now who is going to lead The Fireguyin duty??? What a lose to the CCSD!! Remember that this is the time in your Dad's life that he HAS been working for; he deserves this time :-)

Big talk from one who is struggling a bit at the thought of my Fireguy retiring! Hehehe...

I recall when my parents retired and I was happy for them! They really were so happy to enjoy life without the rigors of a daily job ~

Hang in there, in time it will seem normal for them to be home so much (best wishes to your Mom at not having those 10 days a month!) HA!!

Lily G. said...

Awwww, this is such a sweet post!!! I'm sure as much as you are proud of your dad, he's just as proud of you too!

liliesandgrapes.blogspot.com

OceanDreams said...

I am going through something similar. My dad isn't retiring, but recently is having back problems. It is really hard for me to hear that my dad is in pain (getting better now) because my dad is also very athletic and a busy body. Lately though, he has been losing weight and slowing down due to his enlarged disc. He still is able to work though, so that is good. He also has a passion for what he does and a good work ethic, so I can understand how it is a big change for you that he is retiring. I am sure he will continue with his hobbies and true loves in his life and will continue to be a great example. Our parent's life changes may affect us, but they still stay amazing through anything! :)

Kristen Sara said...

What a thoughtful post- I can only imagine that your dad is as proud of YOU as you are of him! He sounds like an amazing guy! My dad is turning 60 this year, and I have myself choking up for no reason over the past year as I come to terms with the reality of his aging. He still works (and like your dad, he LOVES what he does) and gets around just fine, but there's still something about watching this guy, who has always been my hero, get older. I'm sure you will have mixed emotions when he retires, but just think of all of the things your dad will be able to do now that he is retired! Sounds like he has worked long and hard and deserves some time to celebrate who is and what he has accomplished!

Ali said...

So touching. I can only imagine how different it will be for your dad to not do what he loves anymore - a definite adjustment, I'm sure. And I know what you mean. My dad also loves his job (he's a TV producer, I guess the apple doesn't really fall far from the tree!) and never seems to be working because he has such a passion for it. Hope I get to that point, haha.

Your dad seems absolutely wonderful.

Julie@beingRUBY said...

Hi Tracy. I love reading your posts about your dad. I came over to say thank you and had a feeling you might have a 'Fireman Mike' post today. You write about your dad so lovingly I wish he was my DAD [although he would of had to been a dad at 10 to achieve that!!]

You might remember I told you my grandfather was a Fireman also. Last week I found a newspaper article announcing his retirement [the article is 52 years old!]. So here's to both our heroes! And trust me he will always be a hero in your eyes Fireman or not. Julie

Simone said...

What a beautiful post Tracy.

You are truly blessed to have such a wonderful father, he sounds a total inspiration, what a gift to have been given a Dad like that......wonderful parents have wonderful children.....clearly.

I am sure your Dad will continue to do wonderful things - please share them with us :) xo

Dionne said...

Reading this made me a little teary-eyed. I can really feel your love for him and how proud you are. He sounds like such a sweet and caring man.

I know exactly how you feel about not wanting parents to get older. I have my 19-year-old brother with Downs Syndrome visiting us for a month, and I love having him here, but I keep thinking how awesome my parents are to have raised him as well as they have. I get scared thinking that they are getting older and older. I don't like to think about that stuff!

RCaitlin said...

I just think it's so sweet that he loves his job so much. My dad has been counting the days till he can retire.

Kristin said...

I wish every day that my Mom would stay young forever. : )

Gerri Ward said...

This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes: Anne Geddes says,
"Any man can be a Father but it takes someone special to be a dad."
This says it all, I know this is why you're Blessed and I was Blessed to have my DAD in my life! This is another touching and loving post - Thanks for sharing!

Mrs EyeCanSee said...

What a great tribute to your dad!

Jenni said...

I had that moment, and all I can say is to treasure the time. One chapter of your dads life may be over, but think of how much time he will have now! He can come over to visit, find a hobby that makes him happy, the possibilities are endless! The world may be losing a great fireman, but you are gaining that much more time to spend with your dad!

Angela Darling said...

Wow, I seriously almost just cried over that. That was such a wonderful post. I hope your dad gets to see it and see how proud his little girl is of him.

I can tell you it's a little weird when they retire. You're happy they get to finally take some time for themselves, but I guess for some reason we all just want to freeze them in time. We always want to picture our parents the way they always were (for the most part). I think the craziest thing is realizing that we're all getting older, even our parents. Just like they want to keep us as little kids, we want to keep them just the way they were too. On a brighter side, he now has more time to spoil you . hehehe :)Congrats to your brave papa! What an incredible man.

Carol said...

Aww, what a wonderful post! Dad's are great! My uncle was a firefighter in New York and loved every moment of it. I am so glad there are wonderful people out there like your dad and my uncle that help out people every day.

Alicia W. said...

What a wonderful post and I know he is so proud of you. :O)

Elizabeth Marie said...

Hi love! Wow this is so sweet and touching...I feel the same way about my dad, I just want him to stay the same forever and it scares me a little when I see him going gray or whatever, you know?
You're so lucky to have such an amazing family. And how exciting to have him walk you down the aisle, right?! :)

YES WHERE IS FALL?!!!
XOXOXO

Lori said...

I love when you post about your Dad ~ he sounds like an amazing person. I lost my Dad 8 years ago ~ 7 months before my wedding so he missed walking me down the aisle. I can close my eyes and picture him doing it though, I know he was there that day because he had been waiting patiently for it to happen. I get teary at all weddings now when the bride rounds the corner on her Daddy's arm. I love your relationship with your father because in ways in reminds me of my own. Sorry for the babble Tracy! Forgive me....

mlbenson22 said...

Hey there! I've been following your blog for a little bit after Heather told me about it. I also grew up with your dad as "Fireman Mike" and then worked with the fire dept. through CSD for a long time. he even came to a call for a fire at my parent's house. It's sad to think of Elk Grove Fire without him but he has made such an impact on this community both in his job and the many other things he has done. What a legacy! It's difficult to see our parents get older but you are so fortunate that your parents are healthy and can enjoy retirement. He may be leaving EG Fire (or Cosumnes, I guess) but he will never be far from the hearts of those who have been priviledged to know him or work with him.