Blogging about life and raising our five kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Day 4

This post is day 4 of a 30 day series.

My parents

My parents are Ed and Dawn. This year they will celebrate their 52nd wedding anniversary. I think that speaks volumes.

My dad was raised on a dairy farm in rural Wisconsin, and was one of 11 children. His dad's name is Axel. :-) My dad is full of stories of growing up on the farm, and the antics he and his brothers got into on a regular basis. We have our favorite stories of course, like "Face meat and boughten bread".

My mom was raised in Northern Minnesota on a resort her parents owned. Her dad passed away when she was just 18.

When my mom was 19 she was working in the big city of Minneapolis as a paralegal. She and her friend Joyce had to get a signature from a client. They were sitting at a red light, waiting to left. They heard someone whistle and turned to see two young, handsome men in lane next to them. They all flirted the duration of the red light, and when it turned green my mom turned left, and boys pulled out of their lane and followed them!

When they got the clients house, the girls were a little miffed about these guys following them. As it turned out, they needed someone to witness the signature so she told the guys to come up to the man's apartment with them. Once the business was done and they were back by their cars talking and flirting. Finally the girls said they needed to leave, but the boys said, "Well...umm....we have NO idea where we are!" These farm boys had driven to the big city for an adventure, and boy did they get one! LOL

My parents were married just 3 months later. My dad's friend who was with him in the car was George. He married my mom's friend Joyce, and they just celebrated their 51st anniversary too!

I have 2 brothers and 2 sisters and I was the complete surprise baby. My mom was determined she was DONE after my sister was born, so she was a little miffed when I arrived 7 1/2 years later. She wasn't happy about it. She told God, "If I have to be pregnant again, can you make it a girl, and make her look like me?" It just so happens I do look just like my mom, with some of my dad's features thrown in. I totally have my dad's nose. LOL

I was very close to my dad when I was little. Being the baby of the family, he called me "baby"...well...only after all the others had moved out of the house and I was the last one at home. Because of age differences, I ended up being raised very much like an only child from the time I was about 11 or 12. My siblings, having already graduated or in their final years of high school, certainly didn't have time for the little sister. I was on my own. A lot. My mom had her career, and I often felt like I didn't really fit into her life. I became a very independent child. Sometimes a bit too independent, I think. Even now as an adult I sometimes have to remember I have a partner who I need to communicate with.

My dad owned a very successful luxury homebuilding company with 2 of his brothers. My mom was a multi-million dollar real estate broker for many years. Thanks to the hard work of my parents I was raised in a home with money but I never knew it. We were not raised having things handed to us. We were taught we had to work for what we got so that we'd have pride in ownership. Life was good.

My dad retired about 15 years ago, and my mom retired from real estate about 25 years ago and decided to go to bible college.  They now live in Norther Minnesota. It's only 4 hours away from us, but we somehow have trouble getting up there more than a couple times per year. My mom is very busy, as she's now pastor of a church in their town, and she also travels all over the world preaching the Gospel  of Jesus Christ. My dad always has some project or another going on, and spends a fair amount of time on the golf course. Dean is determined to beat him at the game, but I told him if he wants to remain the favorite son-in-law he better not!

It's interesting to me that so much of my life has been a parallel to my parents. When my parents were 40 they bought motorcycles, and I grew up on the back of them from the time I was 12. Because of that, bikes are in my blood! I got my own bike when I was 39.  Another similarity is our children. Like me, Angela is 7 years younger than her next brother, (though she was very much planned and took two years of trying to conceive to get her!) and has been raised very much as an only child since she was about 8 when her brothers moved to their dads.

I adore my  parents. My dad was the best dad ever. He was calm and quiet. If we got into trouble, Mom would do the lecturing, but eventually dad would speak up, and we knew that when Dad spoke it was like God himself laying down the law. While I may not have been close to my mom was child, as and adult I know I can call my mom any time and ask her for advice. One of my ex's, thinking he was insulting me, would often say things like, "You're just like your mother!" I took it as a compliment. I have a lot of respect for my parents. There are parts of their story that are not for telling here; things that could have easily destroyed their relationship, but they didn't let that happen. They are strong people, who have raised strong headed kids.

1 comment:

blcmec1 said...

I totally love "how we met" stories! Very cool. - Maureen