Ode to dad — The fighter

Updated: November 26, 2015




My dad knows how to fight!  He taught me some moves when I was a kid and I used to mess around with his punching bag. If need be, (thanks to him) I can take care of a lil business…..and I have.

I remember ‘saving the day’ one night at The Porthole when my co-worker was getting beat up.  Someone came in and told me what was going down so I ran outside. By the time I got there, Lance was on his back and the man beating him up was on top of him with a knife.  I picked the man up, launched him into the air and he ran off after he landed on his ass.  Problem solved!  In Seattle, another incident happened.  I was bartending at Ernie Steele’s and my best friend came in for his birthday.  My friend ended up in a head-lock with his face getting punched.  I guess I kinda felt this to be a ‘double-unfair,’ saying how it was his birthday so I went to town….on the guys thigh.  I ran from behind the bar and started punching his leg with all my might!  And, I yelled at him to let him go. Problem solved.

My dad is not a violent man and this is not a post about ‘literally’ kicking ass.  Plus, ‘my incidents’ don’t matter here.  (haha. But, I have them too, dad!)  My dad taught me to fight!  He taught us all to fight!  He taught us to fight for what we believe in.  To fight for our family and friends.  He ingrained our heads with the idea that we could do ANYTHING if we tried hard enough and to NEVER give up.  This has helped me get where I am today.  He has helped me get through my darkest days and to be a strong person during my hardest times.  I am okay.  I may not have a pile of money and my house is always a mess but I’m surviving with my kids and my humor somewhat intact.  Thank you, dad!


My dad…

As a kid, I loved hanging out with my dad.  I was happy just to be near him.  I loved watching him work and I remember bombarding him with non-stop, ‘really important’ questions.  One time, I rode in his dump truck to Martha’s Vineyard to deliver a load of stone.  On our way home, he asked If I wanted to drive.  I sat on his lap and grabbed the wheel.  (I did not have my license)  It felt pretty cool, all up high and above all the other tiny little cars.  When my dad scooted his body out from under me and sat in the passenger seat, I thought I might freak.   Heads were doing the double take, and the what the?  And, we laughed.  My dad trusted me and it felt pretty amazing.

When we, (Devin and I) became pregnant with Jaxen, we were ill-prepared.  (Yep, she was our little surprise)  We had moved from Seattle after his little brother had died. Devin was hell bent on living a sober life.  He said he felt guilty for being alive after doing ‘stupid stuff’ when his innocent brother was dead and didn’t do anything wrong.  So, Devin became relatively sober for a few years.

I remember feeling extremely pregnant and emotionally ‘unsolid’ one day.  My grandmother was dying of cancer, and she had called from the hospital.   She asked me to save her.  She said ‘they’ were holding her against her will and could I pick her up so she could come stay with me?  I could tell she was delusional but I desperately wanted to ‘escape her’ and hide her in my house.   And, I thought how nice it could be to spend our final days plotting our revolution to overthrow the government.  (she was radical)  I was sad.  I didn’t tell Devin I needed him, it was already established….when I needed Devin, Devin drank.  So, I held my composure.

Eventually, my composure cracked and who was there?  My dad.

My eldest daughter has many chronic health issues.  Unfortunately, she has had lots of surgeries, hospital stays and sicknesses.  All the trips to Boston, blood tests, EKG’s, and IV’s were hard, especially when she screamed and cried.  My dad, a strong but emotional and sensitive man helped me out.  I remember one time, Jaxen had to be put under for an MRI.  When she came out of the anesthesia she was incoherent and crying hysterical.  It happened to her every time, its called ’emergence delirium.’  Basically, she screams and crys in terror….. not fun!  I could tell my dad was getting upset so I told him I was okay and to take a break.  A nurse assured him we were all okay.  And we were.  As soon as Jaxen was okay the head nurse told me to check on him, he was ‘really upset’ in the hallway.  I went to him, he said he didn’t want things to be so hard for me.  He broke down and we hugged.

About a year ago, I wrote a letter about Portland Public Schools and planned to make it public.  The first letter was chalk full of swears and hostile emotion.  I knew my dad had a sense of humor, so I read it to him.  We were in the basement fixing the pipes that were clogging up my world and not carrying the icky shitty-sewer water out of my pretty little house.  We cracked up, and I could tell he liked it.  A couple weeks later, I told him I had made some changes but it would be published soon!  I quickly noticed he was not ‘cracking up.’  He was like, “ummm, are you sure?”  Yep, I said and told him to go home and read it, and I had made changes.   Before he got home, my dad called and said he supported me one-hundred percent.  He said, his reluctance was the simple fact that he didn’t want the article to make my already tough life, even harder.  And, he told me a lot of people never believed in him and he proved them wrong.  When he got home and read my article he called and told me it was unbelievable 🙂

Its a difficult thing, raising my kids as an ‘only’ parent.  My kids will never have a slice of what I had and I am completely alone.  All and every part of any stress is entirely on me, the bills, the cooking, the cleaning, the income, the discipline, the appointments and etc.  Everything, all me!  I want my kids to have what I had and what most kids have.  As much as I feel desperately alone and completely overwhelmed at times, I can still say I have my dad!  He will drop every and all things to get to me if I need him and beware if anyone steps in his way.

I am a fighter, just like my dad!

Here are some videos of us hitting a punching bag !!!





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