The Grateful Dad

Upon my transition from corporate America to Yoga world, my father called me to set up a breakfast meeting, a rare occasion in the history of Mario and Christian relations.  You see, our relationship had always been strained as both of us are stubborn, fiery men who viewed giving in as giving up.  On my way to meet my father, my mind started projecting on the events about to occur, the words potentially exchanged, and I prepared my best defense for any and all circumstances. As has always been the case, I was obsessing over something that didn’t ACTUALLY exist!
I sat down and noticed my 73 year old father, former Marine, former corporate guy, unshakable to the core, seeming somewhat uncomfortable.  In the ensuing moments, my father confessed his feelings of inadequacy as a father; he mentioned “falling short” of being the ideal father to me.  Dumbfounded, shocked, yet empathetic, in that moment I vacillated between wanting to hug and comfort my father and also vindictively wishing for more “apology”.  Yet, my Yoga kicked in and told me how difficult this was for Mario to be vulnerable, to admit weakness, to clean his side of the street.  In that moment, my father’s words set me free; liberated me from the finger pointing, the wishing this were different, the self justified anger.

Since that day, our relationship has been a best friendship. One never knows how an encouraging word, an act of support, a willingness to admit fault, can set someone free. So as you roam this beautiful, complicated life, be mindful of the moment.  Your thoughts, words, and actions can set someone free.

Date: June 23, 2017 1:31 pm

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