Father's Day Tribute to My Dad: Childhood Is About Memories, Not Things by Dawn Taylor
I grew up very poor. The youngest of six children, I was used to being hungry, used to wearing the same clothes over and over again, but never asked for or expected more. I saw the wealth of other families and was mesmerized, but never jealous, of how they lived. Even the most middle-class households seemed foreign to me.
My parents would occasionally go out on a Saturday night, while the older kids watched the younger ones. Living on a military base, couples could wine and dine for very little and sometimes they did. As they prepared to go out sometimes a snack of potato chips was rationed (military talk) for us to share. We’d line up and take our chips and wait for my father to dig deep in his pockets.
Both of his hands would then come out and he’d quickly cup them together, hiding the contents. My eyes would widen as he said, “The person who can guess how much money I’m holding wins all of it!” He’d then jingle the change around as I imagined the prize.
I truly don’t recall if I ever won or how much money was in his hands. It wasn’t about the money. The prize was the magic. Of all the childhood memories of my dad that is the one I cherish.