Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Father's Day (a few days late)

I've been thinking a lot about my dad this past week. My dad was a complicated person; I am guessing he was either depressed, bi-polar, or both. He meant well, and had a good heart, but he was hard to live with. Still, he had some really amazing, unique qualities that I'd like to spend some time focusing on. He has been gone nearly 17 years, and I still think about and miss him on a daily basis. I wish I could do a lot of things over--let him realize I really did "get" him, even though I didn't always show it.

The one thing that we always had in common was music: classical, country, 40's era, you name it. We sang together much of the time. When I was a really little girl, he would sing "I Love You" to me, while twirling me around the room. ("I love you, I love you... is all that I can say. I love you, I love you... the same old words, I'm saying in the same old way...") When I was 8 or 9, this was the song he and I would belt out:


Music was our "thing." It was what bonded us together.

Around 1976, my dad & I went to a concert--all of the big country names, like Conway Twitty, Merle Haggard, Crystal Gayle. When I was in 6th grade, we took square dancing lessons together. And when I played in the high school orchestra, my dad was my biggest fan--cheering me on, tape-recording my concerts, and absolutely beaming with pride. He always made me feel good about my interest in music and the arts.

Here are some of the other things I loved about my dad:

- His brilliance, creativity, and inventor-type mind
- His compassion for others; the way he'd take a homeless person to lunch -- while sitting and listening to him
- His passion for politics
- His singing voice, and the way he could get his audience all worked up
- His delicious German dumplings
- The way he'd put a firm hand on my head, shake it gently, and say, "You're a dandy!"
- The pride he took in his appearance, always looking so handsome, even as he aged
- How he could make anyone feel comfortable; the epitome of an extrovert
- His love of prospecting and the outdoors (specifically the surrounding mountains & desert)
- His hearty laugh and big, beautiful smile
- How proud he was of having served in WWII, on the USS Hobby
- The way he called me "punkin"

I love you, Dad... now and forever. In fact, now that I think about it, I love you a little more each day. Happy Belated Father's Day. You were the best dad you knew how to be, and I appreciated that, even if I didn't always show it.

Joseph R. Teibl

April 20, 1921 - August 31, 1991

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