GOODBYE KISSThe Board Meeting had come to an end. Bob started to stand up and jostled the table, spilling his coffee over his notes. "How embarrassing. I am getting so clumsy in my old age."
He paused and then went on, "I remember
the day I decided I was too old for a goodbye kiss. When we got to the
school and came to a stop, he had his usual big smile. He started to lean
toward me, but I put my hand up and said, 'No, Dad.'
It was the first time I had ever talked to him that way, and he had this surprised look on his face.
I said, "Dad, I'm too old for a goodbye kiss. I'm too old for any kind of kiss."
My Dad looked at me for the longest time, and his eyes started to tear up. I had never seen him cry. He turned and looked out the windshield.
'You're right,' he said. 'You are a big boy....a man. I won't kiss you anymore.'"
Frank got a funny look on his face, and the tears began to well up in his eyes, as he spoke. "It wasn't long after that when my Dad went to sea and never came back. It was a day when most of the fleet stayed in, but not Dad. He had a big family to feed. They found his boat adrift with its nets half in and half out. He must have gotten into a gale and was trying to save the nets and the floats." I looked at Frank and saw that tears were running down his cheeks. Frank spoke again. "Guys, you don't know what I would give to have my Dad give me just one more kiss on the cheek....to feel his rough old face....to smell the ocean on him....to feel his arm around my neck. I wish I had been a man then. If I had been a man, I would never have told my Dad I was too old for a goodbye kiss."
I don't know about the rest of the guys, but at that moment, I wanted more than anything to put my arms around my Dad and let him know just how special he was to me. It is so easy to forget to tell people how important they are to us, especially our parents. If you are lucky enough to still have your dad around, then go and see him. Tell him how much you love and appreciate him. And if you can, put your arms around him, give him kiss on the cheek, and let him know that he is the most important man in your life. Don't ever miss an opportunity to tell someone you love that you love them.