Saturday, September 15, 2007
Thanks to him~
Welcome my son as my guest blogger. He wrote this for his freshman comp class recently. (He hates the picture.)
Thanks to Him
by David Douillette
Who does this guy think he is? I was six years old and my mom was taking me to my weekly soccer game one fall Saturday afternoon.I didn’t know anybody who lived on this side of Bridgewater, so when the man got out of the red Porsche parked on the side of the lot and started walking toward us, I had no idea who he was. Apparently my mom had told this man I had a game today and to stop by if he wanted to.
I came to see a lot of this guy I would eventually call Bruce over the next couple of weeks. I found out that my mother and he had met at the fitness center in Bridgewater and as you can probably guess, had become fond of one another. He started coming over every so often and my mother, sister, and I went over to his apartment sometimes too.
It was extremely hard on me every time I saw him and my mother do anything remotely affectionate toward one another. Whenever I saw them getting close, I would immediately leave the room. The sight of it was too much for me to handle at first.
My father had moved out of our house because of the divorce with my mother. Having another man around whom I did not trust at first was extremely difficult. This guy was a stranger to me, but the feeling of distance between us would not last very long.
If there’s one event that finally made me realize that he wasn’t “playing” father, it was one Saturday afternoon in the summer, not long after Bruce had moved in with us. My mother was out doing errands, he was mowing the lawn, and I was in the living room watching TV. Like any kid of that age, I had a vivid imagination. That Saturday afternoon, I was watching a movie that involved people climbing mountains.
I didn’t have any actual mountains in my living room to climb on. The closest thing to one was my sofa. I was climbing along the back like a cat trying not to fall down into the “valley” below, when I heard the door open. In walked Bruce who immediately saw me conquering the couch.
I didn’t have a chance. That was the first time he punished me. I got sent to my room for what seemed like forever. I was shocked when he first told me to go. He didn’t have the authority to punish me did he? I had to obey of course. I had been taught by my mother to respect my elders.
In my room I thought, I wouldn’t want my kid climbing all over the couch either. That’s when it hit me that he thought of me as his kid. Bruce could have come in and ignored me, thinking that I wasn’t his responsibility and just let my mother deal with me when she got home. He took charge and he did what he thought was right. That was the moment I knew he wasn’t “playing” father.
My mother is the strongest person I’ve ever met; and having her and Bruce in my life has molded me into the man I am today. Bruce hasn’t missed one of my sporting events since I met him. I played football, basketball, and baseball since I was ten, so to make every game isn’t an easy feat to accomplish. I’m going to be playing basketball in college and he vows to make everyone of those games as well. When we first met him he already had put his biological son through college. He was done being a father, and yet he chose to start all over again with two new kids. It’s impossible to convey how much that means to me.
There are times when a change in your lifestyle is all you need to accomplish your goals. Bruce gave me the tools that I needed. He didn’t move in with us thinking,
“I’m going to give this kid and his sister a better life.” He fell in love with a woman and just happened to get close to her two kids as well. In the process, her two kids grew fond of him too.
I will never stop loving my real father, but Bruce has made an impact on me that I will never forget. My stepfather has taught me discipline, hard work, and many other qualities that I probably don’t even realize yet. I appreciate everything he’s done for me and I thank my mother for meeting him in the first place. With him, my life changed for the better. Bruce changed the way I think; he and my mother are the most influential people in my life, and will be forever.
I hope you have someone in your life that you think of the same way.