Memories of Daddy, Post 30: Daddy (Un)Intentionally Taught Me Perspective.
Daddy wanted to do everything in his power to ensure we didn't endure any hardships in life, one of the many reasons he worked so hard.
But the funny thing about hardships is that when you've been more privileged than others, it's difficult to put into perspective how "hard" those hardships actually are... especially the younger, and less wise, you are.
Back in Post #14, I said I was spoiled growing up, and it definitely did me a disservice. I don't disparage Daddy for this; he was just trying to be the best dad he could be. But I think about my younger self, and I feel completely ashamed.
In Post #27, I explained how angry I was at Daddy after he had his stroke. But the problem was that my anger was misdirected.
I was angry that instead of going on a trip to NYC with my girlfriend during spring break, I instead had to go home because Daddy hadn't taken better care of himself resulting in his stroke. I was angry again a year or so later as Daddy had to go into early retirement and told me, completely torn and feeling tremendous guit, that he wouldn't be able to pay for my medical school like he originally promised (which he continued to apologize for many years later).
I seriously had thoughts along the lines of:
"How DARE he ruined my spring break???" and
"I'm going to be in debt forever when I go to medical school because HE didn't take better care of himself."
It makes me sick to think I ever had those types of thoughts.
My so-called "struggles", compared to the struggles Daddy endured from starting a new life in this country to his numerous medical problems starting at an early age, are laughable in comparison.
But, thankfully, I grew up.
I learned how to have perspective by finally recognizing how insignificant my struggles were compared to what Daddy had been, and was, going through. But I still wish I could've been a better son to him at every stage of my life.
Both directly with his fathering and indirectly through his struggles with his health, he taught me how to maintain perspective and how to be the man I am today. And though I am still (quite) imperfect, I have the insight to recognize I have room to still grow and become even a better man... and to realize how truly lucky I was growing up.
Thank you, Daddy.