Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Early Father's Day Thoughts

Today I thought of a moment I shared with a friend years ago, and I wanted to share it here. This is the kind of thing I want to do more often on Trace Talks, because I remember little things here and there and would love to recount the stories, but then the moment passes and I forget...but this time I'm not letting it go so easy!

This is a very quick and simple story, and it was over in seconds, but the fact that it remains such a strong memory says a lot about how deeply it touched me. I was with one of my best and dearest friends, Amy (who was also my freshman college roommate), and we were driving down a road together. As we came to a neighborhood intersection, we both glanced over and saw one of the most endearing moments we have ever witnessed.

A little girl, not more than five or six, was skipping happily down the road. Holding her hand, and skipping just as enthusiastically, was her dad. He must have just come home from work, because he was wearing nice pants, dress shoes, plus a shirt and tie. And there he was, not a thought about looking silly or crazy or whatever...he was caught up in the moment with his little girl, sharing in the simple pleasure of skipping. I don't have a doubt in my mind that she will recall that moment with a joyful heart for the rest of her life.

As we watched, Amy and I made exclamations of "Oh, look!" and "How sweet!" And we turned to one another as we talked about it, and both of us had tears in our eyes. That is because we both know how precious a daddy's love is to a little girl. I'm sure Amy has fond memories of things her father has done with her and for her, and so do I. They are memories I will treasure always.

Monday, May 28, 2007


Something really strange happened the other day. Casey and I saw Spider-Man 3 at the movie theater. No, that's not exactly the strange part, although it is rare that we go to the movies. What was interesting and peculiar, and what had me 'weirded out' for an entire evening was this...

On a whim this past Wednesday, I had a thought that I'd like to surprise Casey by setting up a babysitter for the following day and then taking him to the matinee of Spider-Man. I thought of that particular movie because it's the type you really have to see in the theater, with all of the special effects and such. Plus, we had both talked about trying to see it sometime. Surprising Casey like this was not something I normally do, so it was fun being all sneaky about it.

I called one of our college students, a really sweet girl who had looked after Miles several times before, and asked if she would be able to come over and watch him for a few hours the next day. I told her about my plan, and she told me she'd be able to take care of Miles. After the phone call, I went into the living room and said to Casey, "Make sure you clear your schedule tomorrow from about twelve-thirty to three." He asked why, and I just smiled and said that I was going to treat him. Then I told him who would be coming over to watch Miles.

At that point Casey said, "You might as well tell me what you're planning."

"Why?" I asked.

"Because...I was planning on asking her [the babysitter] to come over tomorrow so I could take you to see Spider-Man."

Those who know Casey and I well, and have known us since we first met, are familiar with the connection we have had -- not just a thing where you finish the other person's sentences, but such an exact same type of humor and thinking that it is really difficult to fathom at times. Let me give you some examples:

The summer before Casey and I started dating, we were building our friendship through e-mail, as he was living in another state at that time. One evening, I had just polished off a quarter-gallon of my favorite ice cream -- mint chocolate chip. A little later I was sitting at the computer, checking my messages, and there was one from Case. It went on with the usual stuff, but at the end he had added a P.S., and all that he had typed was, "Mint chocolate chip ice cream." I sat back in my chair and said "Whoa!" under my breath. I asked him later why he had added that, and he didn't have a reason for it.

Another e-mail oddity that occurred that same summer was when I had rented and watched a movie and really loved it. Not more than a few days later, I got an e-mail from Casey telling me that I had to go and rent that movie. I wrote and told him that I had, and in fact we watched it again last night and had some great laughs.

But this Spider-Man thing...it had me weirded out, you know? I told my dad about it, and he wasn't all that surprised. He said that kind of thing happens when you have that kind of connection with the person you love, and that it is a really special thing. And yes, it is a special thing. Casey and I get a kick out of all the funny ways we think of the exact same lines from a TV show or a song. It's one of the things that always brings us back to how special and unique we are, and how we fit together so well.

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