First and foremost, I'd like you to meet the one who made my own existence possible. The man who first loved my mother when they were high school students, and became her husband over 57 years ago while they were still in their teens. His influence in my life can be seen in our shared love of science and nature and thinking seriously and deeply about difficult subjects. I also get my curly hair, skepticism, and tendency toward introspection from Dad.
Next I would like to introduce my firstborn son, who is recently a first-time father, too. Like my father, he married his highschool sweetheart. I will always remember the August afternoon at a High Sierra campsite when Michael and his sweet bride announced that they were expecting their first child. Here is a picture of that day:
Michael is cheerful and funny. He cooks delicious food and gives great hugs. He enjoys monster trucks and zombie movies. He is tender and sweet with all the women in his life, but none moreso than his beloved daughter:
A few years back I watched from a distance as my firstborn daughter fell in love with a smart, energetic, hard-working young man who was also tender and sweet with the women in his life. In September 2005 Maggie brought him from southern Utah so she could show him the Pacific Ocean and I have been in love with Sean ever since. And, yes, Dear Reader, she married him.
Sean builds awesome railroads. He could survive exclusively on salsa and chips. And he enjoys the BBC auto show "Top Gear". If I'm not mistaken, these are exactly the minimum qualifications any three boys would hope for in a father. Here he is with with Boy One (with vehicle and chips) and Boy Two. Boy Three arrives later this summer:
This final father is the man with whom I share my life. Mr. Last (he was, and will forever be, my last first date) is kind and thoughtful and honest and true. He works hard ten hours a day. When he's not working hard he likes to read history, ride his bicycle, or go backpacking and fishing. He's a fascinating individual. And he has raised three other fascinating individuals who have diverse and unique interests such as horsemanship, weaponry, music, reading, world travel, photography, and videography, just to name a few.
He's a fine father, a great listener, and a playful travel companion. He's always up for adventure, even if the adventure is merely one of my famous drives "in the country" or traveling to the next town to explore the public library. Also, I find it strangely attractive that his playclothes invariably include one of his many free tshirts acquired in exchange for donating blood. Yep. There's one in the photo below:
Yay for fathers everywhere and their influence in our lives! And especially for the influence of these four fine men I know and love.
You guys are my personal Fearsome Foursome.
Someday I'm gonna get you all together for a photo
in your super hero costumes.
Happy Father's Day One and All!