Today would have been my father’s 54th birthday. It’s still so crazy to me that the Lord never intended him to live past 53 or to walk me down the aisle or to be a grandpa or be married for more than 29 years.
But day by day, things are getting better, and so today, in honor of my daddy, I made red velvet cupcakes and jotted down some of my favorite memories. I know as soon as I post this, even more great things will come flooding into my memory, but for now, this is what I want to share with you…
- “Earthquake” wake-ups where I would lay on my tummy and Dad would bounce me on my back as I jumped in the air…he woke me up this way up through my senior year of high school and then some...
- Weekly McDonalds breakfasts and how even in college, I would call him on the way to school when I had picked up my coffee and sausage biscuit that morning to tell him that I was thinking of him
- Him sitting in his maroon chair having a quiet time at night and saying “Goodnight peanut” as I passed by
- Always kissing me good night
- Front porch breakfasts where we didn’t say much but enjoyed God's creation and our cereal
- Calling him crying after my first D on a biology test in college and him telling me, “Don’t let one bad grade change your whole life plans.” He was an example of perseverance.
- Calling after the MCAT didn’t go over so well and him telling me it was going to be okay.
- Daddy-daughter dates to Johnny Ozarks when I was little, I’d get two chicken legs with honey and he’s get liver and gizzards.
- Before I left for Germany on a mission trip my junior year of high school, he gave me the best advice he’s ever given: “Never forget who you are and whose you are.” Who meaning Allison Legg and Whose meaning a daughter of God Most High.
- Fishing trips where he’d spend more time getting my line out of the trees, bushes, and Hannah’s pants then he did actually catching anything
- Farm calls to deliver calves and one where he did an autopsy and Jeffrey and I had to tie body parts up in long plastic gloves
- Calling him at work because I left my lunch or my gym clothes or my homework (or anything else) and him always bringing them to me without making me feel bad
- Helping in surgeries—c-section on a poodle, removal of a maggot infested tail, or sewing up the lip of a dog from a dog fight. I loved watching Dad sew up animals. I loved the click on the scissors and always tried to learn how he tied his knots.
- Him letting me “drive” while riding in his lap out in the pasture when I was maybe four or five
- Building a pergola and having a beam drop on my head. He felt awful!
- Soccer games, coaching me during half-time
- Making the decision to give up Saturdays at work just to be able to attend ALL our games.
- Our incredibly awesome four story tree house with a trolley that went from the bottom floor of the tree-house to another tree in the pasture about 50 yards away and the second floor that had a balcony and roof so we could sleep in it. I remember the day he and Mom started planning the tree-house for the next generation…
- Coming to College Station just for the day to attend a baseball game because of an ASC daddy-daughter event...neither of us really even liked baseball
- Taking me to a veterinary conference at A&M where I would color pictures in the very same classroom I would color pictures (I mean take notes) in about fifteen years later
- Going with Dad to work for the day
- Learning how to use hand tools and yard tools and seeing the value of hard work
- Seeing slide after slide of pictures from a childhood in Africa
- Attempting to ride with Dad in a 100k bike race in Chattanooga, TN. He was proud of me for doing the first 27miles.
- The day he gave Jon his blessing and then being the first person to pray for our marriage once we were engaged
- His last words to me were to comfort me: “Shh, shh, it’s gonna be okay, peanut” said three days before he died.
- “My goal in life is to make sure you have experienced as many different things as possible.”—Thanks Dad. Thank you for the memories you have given me. Thank you for molding me into the woman I have become.
My father was the best provider, protector and priest that anyone could ever strive to be. I’ve seen it in his life and I’ve seen it in his death, how even then, he had already taken care of things so we wouldn’t have to.
Suggestion for Valentine’s day—make a list for someone you love.
I love you, Dad. Happy Birthday.