Sometimes I can’t believe I have actually pursued something I only dreamed about….riding horses. When I think back to being a little girl with pigtails playing with my plastic horses, pretending our green vinyl sofa arm was a horse and reading my favorite book, “My Sister the Horse” until it was tattered beyond recognition, it was my Dad who was fostering that love for something I’m not sure he knew much about. We weren’t outside folks so camping and animals and all of that stuff was very foreign to my family. But Daddy always made sure I was able to see the horses at the local stable and watch the races on our little black and white television.
My Dad oozed passion in everything he did. There was no doing anything “halfway” for Gonzalo. From the way he edged the lawn with an axe on his hands and knees, sitting admiring his pristine yard in his .99 flip flops with the sprinkler running (and a Lone Star in hand), firing up the “Ole Smokey” with some good eatin’, walking (more like sprinting) the halls of the elementary school where he was principal to keep tabs on things always stopping to pick up trash in the hall, talking to the kids, observing a classroom and enjoying lunch with the little kids in the cafeteria.
He was not a man of many words, but I know he loved in a tremendous way. He showed me that love by never letting me know when times were hard and always managing to get me to my private oboe lessons (45 minutes from home) every Saturday morning so that I could study with the oboist from the Houston Symphony (one of the best experiences of my life).
I could go on and on about my Dad. There is no one in this world like him.
He welcomed my husband into the family as his own and adored my sons. And I know, without a shadow of a doubt that he loved me despite my flaws. Despite the times I know I let him down. He never gave up on me and always wanted the best for me.
I miss him terribly and I am the woman I am because of him.
Today I Am Thankful For:
- Black and white televisions
- Tejano music
- green, vinyl sofas
- Little, plastic horses