By: Elizabeth de Medici - Rocky Mountain G.R.I.T.S. (girl raised in the south)

I, like many others, have had my up’s and down’s, in and out’s, and everything in between trying to find and looking for that "normal" life. I am now in my 51st year and have finally realized that there is no "normal" life, there is just "life," as Val Kilmer so appropriately said it in the movie Tombstone.

I have been told that happiness is a conscious decision. I’m not so sure. But, if you consciously decide to be happy, then maybe it becomes habit and will be so. I still wonder though.

I am more like my Daddy than I ever thought I was – well except for this small restless streak that seems to pop up now and then. 

I tend to watch people more now rather than be the center of attention. I can spend hours just thinking instead of talking my fool head off about nothing in particular. I can finally find wonder in the smallest of things like the streaks in wood weathered by years in the sun, rain and wind.

I have been blessed to still be alive considering, especially when friends I grew up with – people whom I feel were more deserving than I – have passed on. I have had more chances than most and have wasted most of them, even when I thought I was doing the right thing. One thing I think I forgot for a few years was some of the wisdom Daddy tried to pass on to us. Things like, "The right thing to do is usually not the easiest," and "Be a good citizen," and "Remember who you are," and "Everything you do and say reflects on your entire family."

Another thing I have finally come to terms with is that I will never have, in this lifetime, what my parents have between them. Don’t misunderstand me, Mom and Daddy have had their up’s and downs through the years. They have been through things that would have caused irreparable damage to other couples, but have still endured.

I cannot be the ideal that my Mom is, and I will never find a husband like my Daddy. He thinks my Mom is the most wonderful, beautiful person – the partner he has chosen for eternity.

Just one small example was when they came out west to visit when I was very sick. Mom was taking pictures of everything and as she was setting things up for the exact picture, Daddy whispered to me, "Isn’t she just wonderful. Your Momma can do anything."

I’m sure Mom knows Daddy feels that way about her, but I’m not sure she knows he actually has verbalized it to others – or at least to me. It would certainly be a special thing if I happened to be the only one Daddy has whispered those things about Mom to, but if I know my Daddy – and he does show marked restraint at times – the subject would be hard for him to contain.

This column did not begin as a testament to my Daddy, but considering that this is Father’s Day, I guess is appropriate. My Daddy has been a friend to me, a counselor, a mentor, and at times larger than life.

Hopefully, one day I will figure out how to just live "life," and quit looking for what one would consider a "normal life."

We could all begin with climbing up on that horse again and getting on with it.

Welcome to MY life!

Beth

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