This handsome guy (who I got my looks from, btw) is A Great Man! He's probably the kindest man I know and the best dad ever! He's been through the wringer, but always comes out smiling. I don't remember him ever being mad or upset about the way life seems to love to screw him over. He lives life to the fullest and has taught me to do the same.
Things started to go downhill for him when I was around 12 years old. Him and my mom both lost their jobs and had to sell our house. Even during the move, he would always make the best of things. Since they were "older" it was hard for them to find a decent job again. When he finally did, years later, he lost his eyesight due to diabetes and had to retire early. My mom went back to work and took care of them. They were doing pretty good until my mom got sick and then passed away. Even through everything that surrounded her sickness and death, my dad was amazing. He went with her to appointments, visited her every day when she was in rehab and occasionally stayed the night and slept on a VERY small, uncomfortable chair. He never complained about taking the bus or a cab to see her, he just did it. He took care of her, helped her with her exercises so she could walk and talk again. When she came home, he and Dirty were talking about building a ramp for her wheelchair. Then she passed away and things were never the same, obviously.
He's been doing his best to keep his head above water with hospital bills pouring in, making sure my lil sister didn't make TOO many stupid decisions, and taking care of his own health. He wasn't feeling to well a few months back, but thankfully his kidneys are functioning just fine. Even though he was spilling some protein. Because of his diabetes and such, they had him tested for Agent Orange. That was in May :-| He hadn't heard anything from anyone for MONTHS! The only thing he knew was that when everything was done and he was tested positive, he would get an extra certain amount a month and it would be retro-active. We low-balled it and thought he'd get MAYBE an extra $500 a month and a check for a few thousand. But we still had no idea when this was coming or what was going to happen. Thank you government for all the available information.
He was notified that he did test positive for Agent Orange and would be receiving benefits because of this. Of course there was no date to notify him WHEN this would happen. So he waited, and waited. He finally got notice on Wednesday as to how much he was going to be getting a month. It wasn't what he was expecting, he told me. I was so bummed for him, I just wanted him to catch a break! I wanted SOMETHING to go right for him, just once! He then told me he will be receiving an extra $2,000 a month! That's HUGE! I was so happy for him, I started to cry. I started to do the math in my head and said "so you got like a $1,400 check, right?!" His response was "no, I didn't. *pause* Try like $47,000" I completely lost it right then and there! I couldn't hold it in any longer, I bawled like a baby. I was so happy for him and so excited that he was able to pay his bills and such and not have to worry about if his electric bill was going to be too high. Then he dropped a bomb on me. He told me he mailed me a check. I was stunned and told him I didn't want him spending his money on me, it's HIS! He's the one who fought in Vietnam, not I. He EARNED this money! He was crying too, when I said all of this, so it was hard for each of us to understand the other, but I think he said "it's alright. This is ALL of our money." I disagree and will do my best not to allow him to spend any of it on me. I just want my dad to be happy and be able to turn his heat on without having to worry.
He's looking into buying a house HERE, by ME! I hope he can do it. Not only for me, but for him too. He needs to be closer to me. It's time for my lil sis to share him. She's had him for years, it's my turn now.
I have questioned if good things do happen to good people a few times because it seems as if my dad gets shit on by life a lot, but not anymore! I think I just needed to have more patience and open my eyes a little bit more. He's a good man who truly deserves this. It won't make the pain of him losing his wife any less, but it will make his life easier. For that, I am thankful.