It’s WHEEL WEDNESDAY and I am picking 2 strengths to write about today…. There are FAMILY SUPPORT and MENTORS on highlight this week because I celebrated, what would have been, my dad’s birthday this past Monday.
Not my biological father, but my dad…. My chosen family who, if you are in a place of having chosen family, you understand the value of that bond. While some might believe that you are fortunate if you don’t find yourself in a position to have an opening like that in your life, I will tell you I was GRACED with a man who chose me every day, and I chose him. I continue to choose him and the values that he taught me, no matter how hard it is to accept that challenge.
He also happened to be a great mentor. I learned amazing things from this man. Not always in the happiest of moments, but we do not do our best learning when times are smooth and easy. We learn when the rubber meets the road and the grit from the asphalt burns our skin. A lasting impression comes from a heavy imprint and a large presence. He taught me to be shrewd and tough, to be humble and quiet, when necessary, in order to hear what is really being said. He taught me to be aware and to listen. He taught me that no matter who you are, you always put your pants on like the next person. His most valuable lesson to me I will say though is what I wear on my wrist, every day…… Life is about experiences, the good ones, and the bad ones. You have to experience them in a certain order, even if we don’t understand why at the time.
Having Ted Price as my dad was an experience for me and having me as his daughter was an experience for him. He held my babies in the hospital when they were born, he danced with me at my wedding. I see his face in a proud smirk the day he found out I bought my first house on my own and when he would watch me negotiate anything and he did not have to intervene, his coaching well implemented. His laugh is heard in my soul to this day and while I may not have his hair color, I may not have his eyes, I have his grit. I have his heart. I have the non-tangible things that no one was willing to learn from him, that I willingly was a student of. He taught me risk and stretch. He taught me kindness and ferocity. He made me a badass that my identity thanks him for every day.
To lose a person in your life like that, for me it has been over 7 years now, puts you in a club that no one asks for admittance to. It is a club of grief that you must walk through, again in a certain order, even if you don’t understand why at the time. I was his choice and I keep that at my center when I need some stability and guidance…. I rely more on the other pieces of the wheel that I know will keep me grounded, and I tell his story because it was an awesome one and I loved him more than he probably realized.