Sunday, June 19, 2016

A Day of Fathers and a Note From the Eagle. Phew. Amazing What The Great Whatever Delivers.

The Eagle in Italy, '16
Chitunga wrote the following and yesterday, hearing me talk about my father's Cherry Height's fire pit out back of his home and how much I hated not being in Syracuse to see him with his Budweiser Corn Hole game, Chitunga went to the store to get me a gift - a fire pit - so we would have one, too. Mentoring, guiding, instructing, listening, loving, worrying, teaching, sharing, reprimanding, wondering, and coaching is the hardest role anyone can ever play. The kid has given me a rekindled appreciation for father and son roles and helped this son of a Butch realize how much my own father means to me.

Happy Father's Day, 2016, World! I am grateful for everything my father has done for me and  I like to think that I turned out pretty well from his guidance.

It took me until High School to learn that in communities, such as the one I grew up in, most of my classmates did not have fathers involved in their lives altogether or they saw their fathers at irregular intervals and I know this through my friends and my football teammates. I myself did not have a father at home, after a while I thought maybe it was normal but one of the benefits of playing on a sports team is that you get to travel and experience other environments and communities. Then, I started to observe at our away games that after the games were finished the most of the players on the other team walked off of the field with what seemed to be their mom and dad, if that was not the case, it might have been a mom figure or a dad figure. I am sure my teammates saw this as well; we actually used to joke about the fact that most of us did not have active fathers in our lives.

Papi Butch, Summer Time
Well, for me at least, I met Dr. Bryan Ripley Crandall. In the beginning it was a strict mentorship. Then, came driving lessons, and I have to admit I absolutely loved those moments. I’d go back to share these moments with my friends but they could not relate so I decided to keep this experience to myself. I would wait all week to just go out for those driving lesson and from those moments I found a new drive, a new ambition to do well not just in my academics but I dared to dream of even purchasing a car, which I would’ve probably dismissed as an outrageous thought if it wasn’t for those moments. The driving lessons, and that sole experience alone, provided an incentive for me to work hard and charge towards my goal. From this I realized that maybe things would be quite different if this is how things were for all of my friends and I from the beginning. Skip a few months and unfortunately I bail out on college for financial reasons and I ask to live with Dr. Crandall for a few months until I figure my life out and he agreed.

With this came new responsibilities that were foreign to me such as curfew, house chores, and constant texts asking where I am or what time I will be home. I was vexed by this initially but I decided to experiment with it to just see how it would’ve been like if I had grown up with it. And I am here to say it has done nothing but provide absolute net gain for me because I believe from those responsibilities I gained a new structure, a structure that will serve me well not just at home but out in the real world as well. 

On the last note, there is no better feeling out there than knowing that you’re cared about, and that you have a base, and a home and that is something, my dad, has provided for me. In return, I will try to be awesome, work hard, and hope that down the road I am as successful, or more successful and established than he is.   

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