I had the joy of celebrating this past weekend– and celebrating hard. With friends and family clustering around at every side throughout, it was well worth putting my phone down, laptop away, and simply being with my most adored ones.
Andy Davidson was one of my Dad’s dearest friends. They spent time together playing tennis, in small group or retreats, and probably many other things I didn’t even know or ask about when I was a teenager. Now that Andy is now my mentor, friend, and brother-figure I realize that he’s been available to me for all of those roles this whole time. Celebrating his 50th birthday was truly incredible and a pure delight. Not only was it a blast getting to see a bunch of family friends dressed up as Go-Go girls, Elvis, and a whole lot of hippies- the toasts and words of gratitude and appreciation are a testament to the man Andy is to so many people. He is fully present when with you, asks you the difficult questions and actually pays attention to the answers, supports without judgment and gives insight when appropriate and an assuring hum when necessary. He is bright and light and will meet you in the dark times and places, Andy is a paradox of youth of spirit and true wisdom and I am not alone when I say he is a man of integrity and deep kindness that I am honoured to feel every once in a while over a bowl of steaming pho.
The following day we took a mini road trip (complete with McDonald’s breakfast sandwiches) to Battleground to celebrate my amazing, talented, curious, multi-faceted nephew Rex for his high school graduation. In full Rex fashion he greeted each of us with multiple hugs wearing Sunflower coloured aviators and making each of us feel like we’re the most important person to arrive. After sabering a champagne bottle, snacking on Proscuitto galore, never with a glass empty thanks to Matt or a cigar unlit due to Ron’s diligence- we made our way into the living room for a moment of full connectivity in honor of Rex. As we watched a twelve minute long, wonderfully crafted slideshow of photos from his birth to his GQ days to his now Hunter S. Thompson years, tears flowed freely watching him grow up before our eyes. After an intimate and invigorating performance on his sitar, my mother blessed him in front of a room full of people who love him- and each other- deeply, we could sense the presence of my late father and his pride in his grandson.
Next to me for both of these deeply memorable occasions is a new father figure in my life: Geza, or Pops as I so love to call him. While our journey has been thus far a short one, it is rich. As I’ll be away this weekend during Father’s Day, I look forward to a night of pizza with this wonderful man who makes me feel protected, cared for, and included in his life with my mom and his family. I am ever grateful for his quiet wisdom, unwavering adoration for his new family, unapologetic love for life and full presence we receive when he is with us. Not only is he an anchoring spirit, he is damn good fun. His laugh distinctive and contagious, his generosity deep, and patience strong I so excitedly anticipate the years of bonding to come. To celebrate my first Father’s Day in six years is nothing small and while it may not be on the exact date other daughters and fathers unite I hope that he feels how important he is– not only to his family, but to the extension of gents that esteem him and the impact he makes daily to many.
I am surrounded by fantastic men and they each play very different roles in my little life; it’s astounding to have the privilege of being called by these pillars of strength
“friend”, “aunt”, “daughter”.