Love unspoken speaks volumes, even when we're unaware as it happens.
He did it when he carefully shaped Mickey Mouse ears onto Sunday morning pancakes.
He did it when he held my tiny pre-school hand when navigating unfamiliar terrain.
He did it when he exposed me to his love and appreciation of nature, history, and travel.
He did it when he brought me new pajamas and a necklace with my birthstone in it when I was confined for three months to a hospital bed in first grade.
He did it when he teased "Is that the best you can do?" when seeing my all-As report card.
He did it when cheerfully greeting me with "Hello, Kristiner!" when arriving home from work.
He did it when playfully admonishing me for not liking his favorite sauteed mushrooms on the grill.
He did it it when reprimanding me in his former Marine drill instructor voice when I deserved it.
He did it when he revealed that he'd once been told after an accident that he'd never walk again, in an effort to encourage me to keep exercising my weakened arthritic legs..
He did it when he brought a series of beautiful and tiny gifts home for me from his travels.
He did it when he agreed to pay for art classes for me during high school, when the budget would have said 'no.'
He did it when he gave me a big stuffed teddy bear the Christmas after my mom died, even though I was a college senior.
He did it when he made sure we had dinner together every night after Mom died, when it was only the two of us left at home.
He did it when he promised me he'd teach me to drive before I graduated from college, after I'd begged for years to get my license.
He did it when he quietly said, "That's really thoughtful" when finding a note I left for the next inhabitants of our home.
He did it when he confirmed, "That's very sensible" when I first shared my decision to move my physically-challenged body from icy cold Minnesota to a more temperate Colorado Springs.
He did it in his last hour, when he couldn't speak, but still tried to say "I love you," and then rested when I said it for him, and to him.
Although the words "I love you" never passed through Dad's lips, he did say it throughout the three decades we shared, whenever we had time together.
I miss you, Dad, I love you, too.
Happy Father's Day. Thank you for being mine,
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