“Do it right the first time.” My dad ingrained this into my thought. At times he was a bit of an asshole, and I hated him for it. Looking back I sort of understand what he was trying to teach us. He definitely left an impact on me (and most likely my sister and brother). Not always in a positive way. Yet, I find myself responding to issues and feel as though my dad is yelling through me. There are times with work projects that I think “do it right the first time.” I have words form in my brain, that feel like something he would say (I have just enough of a filter to not say it out loud).
He adamantly cared about looking at a task and thinking about your approach. His response to our sometimes half-ass focus to the task was often asinine. I can remember once when my sister and I were asked to clean our shared room. We did. Or so we thought. We came home to find that all of our dresser and desk drawers where dumped in the middle of the room, our closet contents were on top. When I saw the mess I freaked out a bit, and honestly so did he. His comment to us was: “If you cleaned it the first time you would not have to start from scratch.” His actions were definitely extreme, but his point was made. I have never forgotten what it felt like to see every one of my possessions and my sister’s spewed out all over our bedroom floor. I was also pissed. How could he?
That was his style. That was his way. He made memorable (not always positive) moments. He wanted you to have a reaction so that you would not do it again. Dan and Chip Heath potentially would have appreciated his style, if only it was a tad bit more on the positive side.
Sunday is Father’s Day, and I hope that as my dad watches over me he is seeing my life and thinking: “Tami is doing it right the first time.” I taught her well. Or, “one day she will learn.” Dad’s do their best to teach us what they know. Sometimes they are still learning and growing and we have to take their feedback, comments, and instructions with a grain of salt. Either way, they love us to pieces.
Happy Dad’s Day, Doug!