Sometimes the perfect word of encouragement comes out of nowhere. For years now, I have equated my dad’s love of hunting, fishing, and all things outdoors with my love of reading, writing, and all things academic. My dad built his life and lifestyle around his hobbies, and I hope one day to do the same. Even though I long ago made this connection, I never explained it to my dad. I never fully shared it with him. He has no idea that I am as passionate about reading and writing as he is about hunting and fishing – at least I didn’t think so. Well, I found out from my mom that my dad thinks I am meant to be a writer. My jaw dropped. I must let him know how much this means to me. It is exactly what I needed to hear.
The thing is that I wouldn’t consider my dad and I particularly close. Sure, we love each other. We even go out of our way to tell each other that we love each other often. It is just that we don’t have much in common. In fact, I spend a lot more time with my mom simply because of how much we do have in common.
It is funny how time changes things. As a child, Dad took me everywhere. I was his sidekick. Some of my best and earliest memories involve my dad – everything from watching him play basketball and softball to working at the canoe livery to hanging out at deer camp.
As an adult, we bonded over taking care of his mom and running the canoe livery. My brother Garrett and I will be picking up where our parents left off: We will be the new owners of Russell Canoe Livery once Dad decides to retire. Yet, Dad and I don’t spend much time together. Hopefully that will change.
One writing project I plan to attack sooner rather than later is my dad’s hunting stories. I need to pick up where his cousin Lugene left off. For many years I knew that she planned to write that book. In fact, she even recorded several of his stories. Sadly, she passed away before she could finish the project. In the years since she passed away, it slowly dawned on me that it is now up to me to write the book. My dad is a wonderful storyteller, but he is not a writer. Hopefully this project will bring us closer together. I am one lucky woman to have such support from my parents.