this blog is mostly going to be dedicated to the first man that had my little heart, but before i begin i just have to say that my husband...the second man to truly have my heart is so genuine and kind. the blog post he wrote about me a few days ago about did me in. i mean i'm already pregnant and emotional. when i found out he wrote a blog post i was interested to see what it was about. thought it was going to be something goofy. so i was a little surprised to see what he had written. so heart felt and sweet and i really appreciated it. you understand why i picked him now, don't cha? cause even though we can argue like it's our job and we have a day or even a week here and there where we are just not on the same page....he always makes up for it in a big way. i'm glad you all got to see a little piece of that. so thanks, boo.
but this post isn't about my husband. this is about my dad. :)
those who really know my dad...love him. everyone. i can think of maybe a couple people who might not necessarily care for him...but he's kind of one of those people that if you don't like him...there's something wrong with you...not him. there is something about my dad that by just being around him you want to be a better person. this is a man who was such a joy to have as a father. he is so insightful and honest and genuine and positive and i could go on and on. and his birthday is today!! he is 59 years old. and for those of you who know our family and his health situation, every birthday for my dad is truly a celebration in our family. every year with him is truly a blessing and gift from God. my dad has had type 1 diabetes since he was 7 years old. it's an awful disease that eventually tears apart every organ in your body. although my dad is only 59, his organs are that of an 80 or 90 year old. and this last year has been the roughest of all years for him. on top of the normal aches and pains and pills and doctors appointments he normally has, he had open heart surgery in which he endured a quadruple bypass, which then led him to kidney failure and is currently on dialysis. along with those 2 life changing experiences he's had problems with his eyes in which he's had multiple painful appointments including several needles being injected into the eye. sounds fun.
my dad has always been an active person. he played college sports, coached sports, rode horses, majored in wilderness survival for goodness sake, taught seminary and institute, was always so involved. and the health problems he's had has put an end to basically all those things he loves to do most. including putting the kibosh on many, if not all, of his favorite foods.
norman and i were in pocatello for the weekend to celebrate his birthday with the family and while we were there on sunday, our home teachers came by, who are also some of our family's very good friends. we chatted for a bit and then jason, the youngest boy of the family (22 years old?), gave us a short lesson about trials in our life and how if we turn to our Savior and Heavenly Father during these trials we will get through them and that trials are necessary for our growth to become better people. at the end of his message he turned to my father and said something like this, "cliff, i just look at you and how amazing you are. you have been through so many trials in your life and are such a good man. we look up to you in our family a lot and talk about you in our home often. you have been great example to all of us."
i looked at my dad and saw the appreciation in his eyes and i couldn't help but be so grateful to have him as my father and to be celebrating another year of his life. although a hard one, maybe the hardest, i am so grateful he is still with us to be an influence and to touch people's lives that he comes in contact with.
as you know, norman and i are expecting a baby boy in march. and when we found out, we knew right away who we wanted to name him after. i can't think of a better role model or someone i would rather my baby boy share a name with than my dad. he has been one of the biggest blessings in my life and i love him more than i can express here in this short blog post. happy birthday, dad! i love you and are so happy to have had you for another year in my life. thank you for all you do and the person you are. here's to 2014! the best year, yet! ;)