Today is my father’s birthday. He would have been 80 years old today. I still feel a little twinge of jealousy when one of my friends tells me about heading out for a visit with their dad, or when I see someone hale and hearty on television in their mid-seventies — especially if they’re espousing something hateful — for my father died when he was 68.
I had a fortunate childhood. It was idyllic in a lot of ways. I’d never let my kids ride their bikes all over the city the way I used to do. It seemed like there was more freedom then just to be a child. And while I had homework, I wasn’t slaving away for hours every night the way my children are doing. I had time to play and learn and grow on my own. I could read whatever I wanted, not just what was mandated, because there was time.