It is Fathers’ Day. My son Rafi is a father — a devoted, loving father and I am proud of him. Surely, he and his lovely Chandra are raising a son who will also be a loving father.
I remember when I’d be pushing little Rafi, dressed in red overalls, in his stroller and strangers would comment: ‘What a beautiful little girl.’ He WAS pretty with his soft brown curls and it didn’t matter to me. I’d just say: ‘Thank you.’ (Red is still my favourite colour.)
When Rafi was very little, we didn’t have the fancy olives displayed in the grocery markets today. I used to buy black olives in cans. He’d push one on each finger and march around the kitchen thrilled with himself. I’d chuckle. He was so much fun.
His sister Susan loved him, but couldn’t help but take advantage of him occasionally. When he was about four, she told him a nickel was worth more than a dime because the nickel was bigger. She was offering to exchange her nickel for his dime. I overheard the transaction and scolded her. Rafi, always the peacemaker, insisted he was the one who wanted the nickel.
I wish my son Rafi, who has given me so much pleasure through the years, all the best on this day devoted to men like him. I am also proud of him and of all his accomplishments.
Am busy destroying files and files of papers — a kindness I owe my children after a lifetime of writing, stirring up trouble and fighting city hall (and at times even winning). I found the following and decided to share it with you.
This grown man…
This grown man was my baby He giggled and smiled and brought me joy He clung to me when he was ill (Which happened all too often) His feverish little body cuddled close Against my breast while my heart Beat rapidly with a mother’s fear
This grown man was my toddler His pudgy little fingers explored everything He loved to stand on my feet and hang onto my knees While I clumsily transported him Laughing away from room to room He wanted to marry our dog And buy me a big, big house
This grown man was my boy He took apart every new toy to see What was inside and put together Model airplane kits and cars But never read the instructions He discovered sports and uniforms That life was not always fair And his mother wasn’t perfect Yet continued to love me
This grown man was no typical teenager He laughed down at me from a height I’d have to stand on a chair to reach Why he was never difficult I don’t know He worked out, ran and played basketball And would study — if he had to He thought about girls and I must Never, ever kiss him in public He would call me at work Just to say hello
Note: I also wrote a poem about Susan. See it under: My Susan… April 27, 2020. After all, I do love them both.