Stella Chess quotes
I was quite young when my parents divorced. Cultural differences and family issues raged throughout their lives - and therefore - through my own. My father is a good man, upright and very, very German. He is possibly the most intelligent person I've ever known. His demand for excellence motivated me, but I struggled to live up to his expectations.
My father was my teacher, instilling in me a love for G-d, his law, for justice. He read to me almost daily. G-d's law was ever discussed, examined, explained. Never allowing me to take the easy way out, my father insisted I confront myself in all areas of life. A master logician, he rebuffed any faulty argument, shaping my worldview and igniting in me a thirst, a quest for knowledge, truth, and wisdom. I can not fully express my gratitude. His example laid the foundation for my love affair with words. English words, root words, Hebrew words, Greek words - all were defined, compared, and discussed. My father studied continuously, he does so to this day. My father taught me the beauty of ritual and worship. I respect him highly, and his opinion is one I value dearly. I will get the harsh truth when I ask for it (and sometimes when I don't ask for it); this comforts me. It's a stable rock to stand on, to spring from as I pursue new adventures.
Toni Morrison quotes
In stark contrast, my step father hailed from the Mediterranean. He is a man of love, a man of hugs, of praise and openly expressed emotion. Large family gatherings, boisterous conversation, gentle guidance, and a world where everything revolved around the family table - a life where connection held top billing - this was his gift to me. He taught me every bit as much as my father, but his lessons focused on building strong family ties and offered a sense of belonging. While he held very high expectations, his love was never in question. Praise was given when I succeeded, and maybe lavished even more when I put myself out there and failed. I never wondered if he was proud of me. There was never a time I could not share my joys, my fears, my anything. He suffered through the teen years like a trooper, schlepping through malls and Deb Shop like a pro! He spent countless hours schooling me in Cribbage - we still play...and he still wins. Chiller Theatre on Friday nights around a large bowl of popcorn, motorcycle rides to get a frozen custard, noodle making day, yard work, laundry, after dinner dishes...he spent time with me - and still does. We have tea. We talk about life. We laugh over the kids.
In some ways, I count myself luckier than most. Two very different men stepped up to the plate to raise a daughter in two very different ways. The benefit is all mine. I gained the ability to view the world and all that goes on in it through two lenses - at times complimentary, and at others opposing - and because of that, I have the richness of both perspectives.
To both of my dads...Thank You. I love you.
Garrison Keillor quotes