Thursday, June 16, 2016

Have You Hugged Your Kid Today?

Hugs.

Great big bear hugs.

Dad is in there
somewhere
That's the first thing I think of when I think of my daddy.

He says that I taught him to be a hugger. I don't know about that but I do know that I could always count on a good hug from my daddy each morning.

I was daddy's assistant during milking time. So every morning when I arrived at the milking barn, daddy was already there getting set to milk about 100 cows. Well, sometimes I was late and he would already be milking. [sorry about that, dad. It's just that 4:30 comes awfully early in the morning for a teenager.]

Anyway, it didn't really matter if I was on time or a little late, daddy was always there waiting for his hug.

Back in those days, there was a public announcement that came out on the radio waves ... "Have you hugged your kid today?"  That was daddy's motto. Each morning when I arrived at the barn, I heard those words and those big strong arms were wrapped around me and the squeeze that came with them was Goliath.

Those milking times brought us together. We spent those hours talking about whatever might be on my mind. It could be about normal everyday things like caring for the cows and calves, or maybe about a boy I liked. Maybe we talked about family and stories of his youth. And sometimes it would have been something deeper and more spiritual.

Dad holding "all" his kids
LeAdam had not yet arrived.
Back at the farmhouse, I loved to be next to my daddy. We, kids, used to fuss about sitting next to dad at the table ... until it was decided that the oldest one living at home got the prize seat.

I loved to sit next to him on the couch when we were relaxing. Sometimes I would get right up on his lap and snuggle up to him. It just felt so safe next to my father who loved me dearly ... and I loved him.

I miss those days and those hugs. For one, we now live 1,306.9 miles apart. Daddy's loving arms are long, but not that long. :)   Secondly, when we are together, he has to hug me gently, because I deal with chronic pain.



I guess we can no longer "all" sit on his lap
But regardless, I have always felt my father's love. And I still do.

He has been such a beautiful example of a father's love. It has transferred to my heart to my Heavenly Father's love. I have never doubted the love of my Lord because I know what a truly loving father is like. Just as the scriptures say,

"An earthly father expresses love for his children; it is no different with our heavenly father; The Eternal shows His love for those who revere Him." Psalm 103:13

Even now when times get rough, it's a wonderful thing to be able to imagine climbing up on Daddy's lap (earthly or heavenly) and feeling His presence and comfort.

Thanks, Daddy!

Hugs and Kisses!