A Word Hug For MY Dad

“Hug your reader with your words.” That’s what Cec Murphey said.

Hug your dad with your words. That’s what the quiet voice in my head echoed back to me.

My dad is not a hugger. Actually, I’m not a hugger by nature either. I trained myself to be okay with people entering my very large personal space bubble.

Hugging may not come naturally to me, but words do.  From my mouth they often lack, but from my fingertips they flow.

I remember the day my dad was scheduled to have triple bypass surgery several years ago. Chest wide open and mess with the most important organ in his body kind of surgery. I knew it was a pretty common procedure, and for the most part, I was not overly concerned about it. I was pretty certain my dad would be out golfing with the grandkids by the end of the summer. (And if I remember right, he was out on that course a couple months after getting his heart fixed.)

But the little girl in me was a bit fearful. I didn’t want to see the “frail” part of my dad. He is the guy who builds treehouses, replaces roofs and fixes broken things. He couldn’t be the guy whose heart needed to be fixed.

But he was.

As he was getting ready to go under the knife, I thought of those words from Cecile Murphey. Give your readers a word hug. So I got on my computer and I put the following conversation in print for my dad.

“You know, you kind of married your dad.” Corey slipped that statement in while we were talking about some crazy remodeling project.

I think I replied something like, “What?!? You are a weirdo!” and elbowed him hard in the gut. (It’s my go-to way of causing my husband mild physical pain 😉 )

“Well, he knows how to fix things, and I know how to fix things. He builds things. I build things. He doesn’t like to be around crowds of people. I don’t like to be around crowds of people…”

“Okay, Okay, I get it. I kind of married my dad.”

Unlike Corey, Dad doesn’t play the guitar, and I can’t remember him singing any song – except for There’s A Hole In the Bottom of the Sea to make me laugh when I was little. He doesn’t lift weights. He doesn’t go backpacking. And I’m positive he has no idea how to play Terraria.

But though I can name many differences, the commonalities are undoubtedly there. In addition to those Corey named,  my dad is a wise money manager, he’s one of the hardest workers and honest men I know and he always squeezed money out of the budget to take his family on fantastic memory making vacations.

So yes, Corey, I guess maybe I did kind of marry my dad.

People say that your relationship with your dad can not only affect who you marry, but the way you relate to God the Father as well. I have never had a doubt that my earthly dad would take care of me and that has made it easier to trust in hard times that my heavenly father will take care of me too.

 Whoever fears the LORD has a secure fortress, and for their children it will be a refuge.

Proverbs 14:26

Kim Harms

Kim Harms is a writer and speaker who is represented by Literary Agent Karen Neumair of Credo Communications. She is under contract with Familius Publishing for her first book, tentatively titled Life Reconstructed. Harms has a degree in English: Literary Studies from Iowa State University and was a regular contributor at the former Today's Christian Woman. She underwent a bilateral mastectomy and reconstruction surgeries in 2016 after being diagnosed with breast cancer and writes about her Life Reconstructed at kimharms.net. Central Iowa is home, and she lives there with her husband Corey and their 3 ever-growing man-children.

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