What I’m Thankful for #18: My Parents Decided to Keep Me

This is one in a series of daily posts I conceived of writing many weeks ago while the election still raged on, as I looked for something to write about of more lasting value. The weeks leading up to Thanksgiving seemed perfectly appropriate for it. Just in case you wondered, the topics introduced are not necessarily in any particular order. I hope the series is of some small encouragement to you, even as my site traffic takes a dive.

Two days to go until Thanksgiving, I would be remiss not to mention one of the things I’m most thankful for: my parents. It’s true that you don’t fully appreciate them and what they do until you have children of your own.

My parents aren’t perfect. I’d obviously be lying if I glossed over them as something better than what they really are: two hard-working, Christian people who provided for my physical needs, along with a stable home environment with good discipline and opportunities to learn and grow.

There weren’t many times where I can recall facing my father’s stern anger, but the few memories are real and distinct – always well-deserved. For the most part, I was put on the straight and narrow path at a young age by a serious look in his eyes – knowing what was behind it. My dad mostly is a quiet, reserved, easygoing kind of guy. It’s a side I’ve seen more and more in him as I have matured.

The respect and love for my dad has only grown through the years, and now with kids of my own has become a truly deep appreciation. Though we’re different enough in many ways (for example, I could never pick up his knack for woodworking), I see more of his ways in me now. One thing I remember fondly is our annual tradition of going to the Pontiac Silverdome to watch a couple high school state championship football games.

As for my mom, you could never question her sincere devotion to her family. She invested a lot in my brother and me, something all too easily taken for granted for a time. She went out of her way more than once to do things that would make for good memories later – Christmases most especially. Need I mention the butterscotch bars, molasses cookies, oatmeal cakes, and so many other baked delicacies I can almost taste by closing my eyes?

In the years before I had my license to drive, she carted me many, many places in the forgettable white Buick Century or the unforgettable Chevy Astro minivan. There were many years where I took part in the merciless teasing of my poor, outnumbered mom. (Apologies have been said where appropriate.) I’ve grown since then, and the wheel has turned against me.

There’s plenty more I could write about my parents. Consider this an abridged version, however, rather than a full accounting of all the grateful things I could say. Most importantly to me was the importance they placed on the things of God.

Did I really have reason to question whether my parents would keep me or not as a child? Not unless you count the two different times they drove off and left me at church. Okay, seriously, no, but it got you to read, didn’t it? Thanks, mom and dad. And thank God for His grace that gave me the home to grow up in that I did.

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