Friday, May 20, 2011

Showing Up

My husband rocks. Alan and I started dating when we were 19. Who in the world meets their soulmate at age 19? I mean, seriously, he still had bottom braces, and I still had chubby cheeks. How is it possible that we fell in love and got married, and 20 years later we have three teenagers and a happy marriage? (God, I hope I'm not jinxing us!)

But here's the thing. Not only did I luck out with a husband who would never pull a Tiger Woods or Arnold Schwarzenegger on me; I also got a husband who is a first class mensch, (Jewish word for a stand up kind of guy you'd be proud to bring home to Mama), smart businessman, and most importantly a loyal, loving, supportive father. And did I mention that he's hot?


Anyway, the reason I'm feeling so very appreciative of Alan is not because of the new ring he bought me for my birthday (though that helps). It's because he is right now on a plane heading to his father's funeral.

Alan's father left his family when Alan was only seven. He saw him a few times after that, but there was no real relationship. It's hard to have a relationship with a man who didn't show up for visitations and didn't pay child support. Having your dad abandon you will mess you up. And my husband and his sisters all had to deal with this loss in their own ways. When I think about Alan growing up without his dad, my heart breaks, both for Alan and his father.

Alan's father missed out on the nachas (Jewish word for pride and joy) of raising a smart, athletic, sweet, and funny boy. And then he missed out on seeing that boy mature into a real man. The kind of man who would fly to Florida to pick up his grandma and fly with her to Vegas to attend the funeral of a father who almost never showed up for him.

Showing up. It's a way of life I was lucky enough to learn from my dad. Alan learned it despite his dad. Whether it's work or play or family or friends. Just show up.