It's Not A Tie

3rd July 2012

When I was a kid, and Father’s Day or his birthday rolled around, I would buy my Dad a tie.   Or a wallet.  I wasn’t very creative back then.  At Christmas, people would get something from the craft-fair at school.  Nothing with glue or dried macaroni on it, because I thought that was a waste of food.  But if my Grandparents needed a magnet or a bookmark with a purple tassel on it, they knew I would hook them up at Christmas.

The big decision for my Dad was whether the tie would have stripes or zigzags on it.  Or how many photo slots would be in the wallet.  Would this year’s shirt have one of those little green alligators on it?  Who knew?  Ask Grandma.

My father doesn’t like surprises.  Back then he would use sneaky tactics such as the Alphabet Game to find out what I saved up my allowance to buy him.

‘Does it begin with a T?’

I looked at him sideways.  Because I could.  ‘Yes.’

‘Is it tiger?’

‘Yes, Daddy.  I broke into the Zoo and got you a tiger.  Because six year-olds can do that.  Real guesses, please.’

‘Is it a tie?’

‘Yes!  How did you know?  Oh, no.  Now you know.  I’ll have to switch it for a wallet.’

This happened every year.  One year, I was particularly devastated.  I had kept THE SECRET for two whole days.

Since he knew about the tie, I also got him a heart sticker.  Which he put on the dashboard of his Blazer.  I have never been a hearts and flowers kind of girl, but I loved that heart.

These days, I ask for a list of books he wants to read.  One year I found him a not-so-tiny model car.  And the year I surprised him with The Sopranos box set, Sarge and I watched it first.

I’ve always known it’s not about the stuff.  I like gifts people will appreciate.

For the past few weeks I’ve been going to spend Tuesdays with Dad.  Watching old movies or tennis after his radiation.  I’ve always loved hanging out with my Dad.  I appreciated him before he got cancer, and I still do.  I cherish all my time with him.  But I wish we didn’t have to share this time with 24 different medications.  And even though this stuff will make him better in the long run, I wish he didn’t have to take it in the first place.

The only thing I want to give Dad for his birthday in a few weeks is, ‘Dad, you are cancer-free.’  That and a six-month supply of his favourite rice pudding, as it’s the only thing he can eat right now.

That’s it.  And it’s not a tie.

Well, there is one more thing I’d like to give him.  I figure Sarge and I can work on that next year.

Proof that Dad and I have kept up the sappy-but-still-true magnet tradition.

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No Comments

  • Reply becomingcliche 3rd July 2012 at 2:57 pm

    I hope you’re able to give him exactly that!

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:24 am

      Thank you. We do, too!

  • Reply Martha Goudey 3rd July 2012 at 3:01 pm

    Sounds like you have been blessed with a great relationship with your dad. So sorry he is ill…hoping for the best.

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:25 am

      I have! Thank you!

  • Reply Eileen Riley 3rd July 2012 at 3:03 pm

    Writing this post was a gift, one I bet he loved.

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:27 am

      I wish I didn’t have to write this one, but it helps me make sense of it.

  • Reply Carol 3rd July 2012 at 3:31 pm

    Cancer is a beast, but it can be beat. I wish your dad the greatest of results and many more years for you to spend with him. In the meantime, I suspect your Tuesdays are the best gift he would wish for.

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:29 am

      Missed our regularly scheduled time yesterday. Writing makes me feel useful.

  • Reply support@theoddcoupleblog.com 3rd July 2012 at 4:27 pm

    I think the relationship you have with your dad is gift enough for both of you. I pray your dad does become cancer free and you enjoy many more years of eating rice pudding together.

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:30 am

      Thanks for the thoughts!

  • Reply CopperLeaf Treasures 3rd July 2012 at 4:57 pm

    You’re in my thoughts & prayers and enjoy EVERY minute you have!

  • Reply Julie Jordan Scott (@juliejordanscot) 3rd July 2012 at 5:41 pm

    Samuel bought his Dad a tie this year, too. I wonder where in the “Child” manual it says a tie is the way to go? Your dad is blessed to have you in his life… especially now. Keep these memories flowing. PS – Did I tell you, Katherine is going to go to University of Edinburgh this Fall?

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:35 am

      There’s a Manual?! I missed it, ha. But I was very fond of Life’s Little Instruction book(s).

  • Reply Sara 3rd July 2012 at 11:11 pm

    You make me want to live my life better.

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:37 am

      And I think you’re pretty cool, too, Sara. Even though you don’t like butterflies! 😉

  • Reply Karen 4th July 2012 at 12:00 am

    I LOVE how much you LOVE your dad. 🙂

    • Reply LKD 4th July 2012 at 11:38 am

      I do. 🙂

  • Reply Classic NYer 5th July 2012 at 4:37 pm

    What a beautiful tribute! And I love the quote on the magnet. It kind of made me tear up a little.

    • Reply LKD 5th July 2012 at 9:09 pm

      I’m SO glad I found your blog!

  • Reply misssrobin 5th July 2012 at 11:50 pm

    What a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your heart.

    Stopping by from SITS.

  • Reply CMcKane (@cmckane) 7th July 2012 at 1:19 pm

    Glad you linked this one up for sharefest. It was a beautiful way to start the day. I’m sure knowing you’re there by his side makes it so much easier for him. Hope you get to give him his gift this year and next.

    Now I want to pass out some heart stickers!

  • Reply ashleyinnc 7th July 2012 at 2:03 pm

    What a beautiful tribute. I came over from the SITS sharefest, and I am so glad I did. 🙂

  • Reply Sarah @ Toddler Summer 7th July 2012 at 4:20 pm

    What a nice post! I’m sure just this post alone was a great gift for him! Stopping over from SITS!

  • Reply barefoot_med_student 7th July 2012 at 8:09 pm

    Heart-warming! My dad loves getting ties, because he always feels like he doesn’t have enough of it. That and handkerchiefs. He recently discovered audiobooks, so that’s another thing to add to the list.
    The thing I most want to give him is his sight back.
    I hope your dad will go from strength to strength. Best wishes.
    Visiting via SITS Sharefest 🙂

  • Reply 2012: The Year That Was | Gin & Lemonade 22nd December 2012 at 2:21 pm

    […] Our engagement party also saw the beginning of Dad’s treatment. We burned things to celebrate both. And part of that treatment involved writing our invitations. Thank you, Daddy. […]

  • Reply I’d Take Them With Me | Gin & Lemonade 30th January 2013 at 5:28 pm

    […] And since The Box is one thing, and stick some more memories in it. I’d cruise by the fridge, still hanging over Sarge’s shoulder, asking him nicely not to turn the wrong way and accidentally smack my head off the wall while I swipe my magnet collection. The oldest being a pair of family cats and the newest is one from my Dad. […]

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