A dusting of snow. On the other side of those beautiful blue stained glass windows lies white late-March flakes. It was a cold, short trip to church this morning. Dad and I made the second of three car rides an hour ago. Last night, during Saturday service, we had an inkling today was bringing the snow-stuff. Next service at 10:45? More of the same.
Dad will, dutifully, attend. I must, as the organist on staff, sit on the keyboard benches as well. “Must” is too harsh. I so thoroughly enjoy my keyboard acts of paid generosity at Zion Lutheran. This time is a fold-into world where I can live without judgement of myself and share a talent with others. Prelude, hymns, liturgy, preludes, kyrie, and sanctus … all are part of sharing a belief so important to the faith life in the hearts of members.
We arrived early – as is custom. Nobody other than the Pastor and us grace this space prior to ten minutes ’til. The air was, predictably, still. Silence prevailed save a few rustling papers at the end of Pastor Dave’s fingers in the pulpit as he organized his thoughts. I organized the organ while whispering among the wisp of music sitting on the rack. All is prepared worship.
After all was done, dad found his way forward to the front pew. Something unique caught my morning, still awakening, eyes. Unknowingly, he and I nicely connected our attired tastes. Matching black dress pants and decorative gray blazers adorned our generationally partitioned selves.
We chuckled. It was nice to laugh with dad. A connection that held together the fabric that is a relationship between a son and father was wonderful to experience. Additionally, he agreed to a picture. Special.
We separated soon after the picture was taken.
A few dozen parishoners came in, the silence was broken with shuffling bulletin bending, and service life began. Dad didn’t light the alter candles as I began the prelude. Another held that responsibility tightly and tapered it nicely into her life. He didn’t seen to mind as the last pew accepted him into his normal, comfortable spot.
I will remember the photo for a while. These are moments a father and son don’t get too often. He agreed, which is, normally, outside his capacity of comfort. When I said, “Check it out, dad. We’re looking good together. Black and gray … both of us!”. He happily replied, “Yeah, this is interesting”.
“I want to take a picture, what do you think?”
In the effort to take the picture, he was careful to help me get it right. Now, taking a “selfie” one-handed to make sure the pants AND blazers appear is a pretty difficult task. Dad and I laughed our way through the process.
We finally decided, “What they see is what they get…”.
… and I wholeheartily agreed.
What I got was a wonderful few moments with my dad. We may not be alike in a lot of ways, but in the overall fabric of our lives together now, we are alike. We share humor when we can, frustrations when available, friends and family when they are around. As of this post, ninety-five Facebook friends have responded in love and friendship to the above picture.
There may not be too many snowy days ahead for us … or, we could have a decade plus. Who knows? For today, a day to celebrate what would have been a birthday of a special person in our life together, I will take a few minutes with dad.
Family truly is the fabric of life.