Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Observations: When My Dad Was My Age

My father has been gone for 19 years.  All of my life, I always considered him an old man.  This is a combination of the facts that I was a change of life baby for my parents, arriving in HIS 47th year, and because a doctor told him he was sick so he considered himself disabled for most of the time from my birth to his death.

This week I gave pause to reflect on MY age, and ponder where my father was when he was my age.  When my father was my current age, he was relocating the family from New Jersey to Florida.  He had never owned a home, and had no money.  His wife, and 4 kids aged 3, 5, 10 and 11 headed to Florida with little to no money.  He took them to a hotel on US-1 until securing a rented house with what little money they had.  He was waiting on a disability check from the company that he had retired from.  There was so little money, my mother suggested that if any of my older brothers friends invited them to dinner to take them up on it.

I could not imagine being in that position at my age, and taking on that task this late in life.  I know many are in that situation.  I just look at the grand kids around my circle, and I am appreciative that I am not raising 4 of my own kids this late in life, and that I have the security of being a homeowner, and some measure of financial stability.  Just an interesting, personal observation that I thought I would document and share.

The chronology has been on my mind of late as I have been digging into my ancestry and learning more of the stories of my family down the different lines.  As more of my family members die off, more stories are lost.  Last week, my step brother in law passed away.  He and my stepsister have a huge and wonderful family.  It was always interesting as a little child to visit them in S. Florida and have these teenagers introduce me as their uncle,

I had one step sister from my Mom's previous marriage, and 3 step sisters from my Father's previous marriage (only one living still) and my two brothers and a sister.  Large family, and for the most part, we are all strangers to each other.  Thankfully, Facebook connected many of us.    

1 comment:

Claudia Ruth said...

Dear Harry, what a beautiful bitter-sweet " Family Ponder". allow me... .My story is very similar to your's.. kinda like side by each ! My father died in 1949, he was an All-American, Notre Dame graduate,, Battle of the Bulge war hero, and who Mom said was the perfect man.! When he died, I was 4 years old. My older sister Michaelyn was 6, my younger brother Bill was 4....Mom was pregnant with Thomas. Mom remarried two years later, then came Rick, Kathy and Victoria. May I add, we were not from Catholic or sexy Baptists. We were the 4 Archers' 3 Janetos step. Life goes on and Mom drove all of us kids from Parkersburg W.V. to Florida to live and grow up in the sunshine. We drove to Miami first. In our motel room under the pillow , Mom found a huge palmetto bug, the granddaddy of them all !! She loaded us all into our 56 Chevy that evening and off to Daytona Beach we settled. Mom and my Stepdad, George Janetos ( I loved him so, later on in life) got a legal separation . George found us a small but adorable bungalow on the beachside, Golf Blvd. The Archers' received $35.00 a month each from S.S. The Janetos kids received from George $$? sometimes a month. Coach Joe Nelson arranged for us kids to get lunch tickets at S. Jr. High and SHS. Mom worked ;; Secretary for the Jaycees, the News Journal, H.R.S. ,, taking in ironing , never remarried...she was able to retire at age 55. My son Steve Butler crossed over 2002 age 37. His Father Bob Butler passed 2005. Mom crossed over 2004 . My very closest, childhood friend Sondra White, gone also 2005. Sweet brother Thomas Archer died alone on a January 7th,, 5 years ago.. only Christy Dunlop knows the whole story. No matter the age of our Fathers' remember the minutes , the hours and the even few years. and know they did the very best they could. I just posted a picture of my ( I have 14 ) nephew, 45 years old Kris Persaud and his 8 month old baby son...pure love ! " You are never to old".
Harry, you have built a wonderful life. If you want to see your kin, reach out. If I waited for my siblings to come around and see me at my house, it would be raining cats and dogs.! For the most part, my nephews, grand nephews fill my them so much.
Also our pets ( your Yvette Meow) I fell in love with you when I learned you named your cat after the adorable actress.) and our Facebook friends fill our lives. I am a better person just because you have "befriended" me on line, because we have gone on walks with the IGUIDB, you are a natural leader . Keep up the Blogs, you have so many talents .

" I'm Just Wild About Harry " It's a delight to be in your Family, Claudia Ruth Archer. . .