My dad was a quiet man. Not just in words, but in actions, in outlook. My dad was probably the little kid in the corner at school you hardly noticed. But believe me, he saw you. He not only saw you, he watched you. And if you came close to him, he listened to you.

My dad was a man who knew how to listen. He didn’t fill the world up with useless words. Wasted breath. You could spend time with my dad, and not feel like you had to fill the empty spaces with words, just to mark the time.

Lately, I have been trying to focus on the NOW, the HERE more. Because I can see that much of my life is speeding by, without my presence. My intentional, thought-filled presence. So I am trying to hang on to the now, and forget the past and quit staring down the future. Not an easy thing for me.

I am trying to pick up little bits of my daily life and hang on to them, look at them, treasure them.

My dad was good at that. Looking at the little things. Giving up the big things.

After my dad died, I was in his room, going through his stuff. Trying to hang onto his presence as long as possible. I came across a little box of this and that. Little treasures he had tucked away for himself. One of these was a little white envelope.

Do you want to know what was inside? Rocks. Little tiny rocks. Like what you would find in a young boy’s chubby little fist. Which is just where they came from. Many years ago, my dad had taken my (then) little boy to the park. To feed the fish. My son was fascinated with rocks. I can just see him picking each one up, excitedly showing it to his grandpa. And then asking his grandpa to hold it for him. To keep it safe. And my dad did. Whatever you gave to him was safe with him-rocks, words, silence. And at the end of the day, my dad came home with a pocket full of rocks. Rocks long forgotten by my son, but still in my dad’s sacred care. And my dad was faced with a decision. Toss them, knowing my son wouldn’t know (or even care at that point). Or keep them. Treasure them. As a reminder of a moment.

My dad kept them. Put them in an envelope marked, “Little Mikey-Rocks”. And put it in his own little treasure box.

Even though he isn’t here anymore, my dad is still an amazing example of some one who knew how to treasure the little moments.

Thank-you Dad, for a life lived well, moment by little moment.