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All too many times overwhelmed caregivers are physically and emotionally depleted and need to take time to rest and care for themselves. Believing in a holistic approach to caregiver stress and a strong commitment to helping our members find the right solutions, we created this blog to help you connect with others who, like you, may be facing the same eldercare issues and challenges. Feel free to comment, ask questions, and submit articles. Please forward the blog link to your family and friends. They'll be glad you did.

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Patricia Grace
founder & CEO
Aging with Grace

Friday, June 19, 2009

Deeds, Not Words, Made Dad’s Love Obvious We don’t have to hear “I love you” to know we’re loved

By Rita Files

I overheard a conversation the other day where one woman was complaining to another about how she never heard her father tell her he loved her. “He never once said ‘I love you,’ and I do everything for him now.” Hearing this, I began to reflect on my experience with my own dad and came to the realization that I never heard those words from him either. Yet I always knew I was loved.

My Dad was the epitome of a brawly Irish man—big and tough looking, the type you wouldn’t want to have mad at you for any reason. Yet this same man would cry like a baby during Shirley Temple movies. He was a man of few words who had mastered the art of communicating through body language. With a smile, a chuckle, or the shake of his head, I knew if he approved of something or not. I knew he was proud of me when he would say with a tear in his eye, “You’re a good kid, Re Re.” And with a simple “You’re something else, Re Re,” his love was apparent.

Dad grew up during the tough times of World Wars I and II and the Great Depression. Instead of enjoying his teen years the way I did, he was busy working to support his family. When he wasn’t working, he was learning sign language so he could volunteer to help deaf children. Every year, he played Santa at their Christmas party. He also made sure that a neighbor who suffered with profound Down Syndrome always had a ride to church and doctor visits. My dad’s way of saying “I love you” was by doing, helping, and giving to others. He didn’t talk the talk, he walked the walk.

Not everyone is able to express their love with words. My dad did it with deeds. Knowing you are loved is what is most important as you go through life. In other words, I always knew that my dad loved me.

1 comment:

  1. Read this with a tear in my eye. A great tribute
    to ponder.


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