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Me Nights

because this moment is about me

By Lucia LinnPublished 2 years ago 3 min read

My dad is busy.

I don't remember a time where he hasn't been. He chose a difficult career to succeed in and it required a good deal of commitment. But his passion is one I share, and his role as a story teller is wrapped up in his identity, as an individual but also as a father. But yes. Busy. Very busy.

I am far from the only person in the world in this situation, but it is a little crazy.

On top of his job with wild hours and the constant traveling through my childhood, he has gone through three surgeries, at least one of which being potentially fatal. Two of them demanded that he forever after follow two entirely conflicting diets. As a result of the second, one ear has bit the dust and a titanium plate in his head throws a fit at every weather upheaval. And in Moscow, Idaho, those are far from infrequent.

Now, all of his children are a lot older, and a little more intelligent. He can be actively part of our lives in new ways, and include us more in his. My sister and I work for him and my older brother debates with him. I go to him for tips and editing and advice and my little brother is coached by him. My littlest sister is just entering the age where she can be active in more mature conversation.

But years ago, what we needed was different.

When I was young, and he had only had one surgery, he fought to make ends meet while working construction on our house because everyone thought his dream of turning the dinky house into a home worth remembering was crazy. Now, no longer living there, it still stays with me. I can picture him on the ladder as lightning gathered and the aspen leaves whispered warnings of wind. I stood on the porch barefoot, tugging at my curls and listening to the weather, not yet understanding everything he was doing for us.

Busy as he was, he had five rascals in desperate need of attention.

When things were extra busy, he established a new tradition. He called them 'Me Nights.' A night where one of us would stay up late and hang out with him doing whatever shenanigans.

Why 'Me Nights?' We all asked. His response was obvious: "because it's all about me of course!" At the time, I just thought he was being silly. But over the years, I came to truly appreciate his wording.

Good fathers know that kids need them. But my dad wanted us to know that he wanted to spend time with us. He wanted us to feel that we were treating him with our presence. We weren't a bother or a bore. It was fun for him.

It was simple things. He would wander up the stairs to the attic that he had built and grab a pajama clad child. My brothers might be treated to video games with him. Once he had me downstairs in my nightgown to paint my toenails. Other times, it was the well-loved 'jammie ride.' Going for a car ride in pajamas. Maybe to Walmart, Starbucks, to look at Christmas lights in winter, to the cousins' (if they're awake).

He's busy. But even at his busiest, he made time. And he put thought into the details, the names of the hangouts, so that we would always remember what we mean to him. Little memories to keep in my pocket. Little reminders for what I will want my future kids to remember about me.

immediate family

About the Creator

Lucia Linn

"Thinking about it is easier than doing it and so far I haven't even thought about it." - Ashleigh Brilliant

Bits of fantasy and LOTS OF POETRY and whatnot here, comedic comics on Instagram @mostlymecomics

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