Working with my Dad

My dad decided my wife needed a greenhouse so he bought her one. That’s the sort of thing dad does..

We had to level the base of a unit, and we only argued about most of it:) The base is the easy part, the rest has more pre made pieces than I ever like to see in anything,

Working with my dad, or with anyone I know really well (too well) is always interesting. My dad in fact taught me how to work in the first place. “Daytime is for working, nighttime is for sleeping!”, one of the things he would say if Ryan or I slept in or had a nap during “working hours”.
(Working hours are whenever there is light in the sky OR between 7am and 7pm, whichever is greater. Working hours are also whenever there is work to be done after hours)

I know how he thinks and admire him. He also drives me crazy and I do my best to reciprocate. Dad is methodical and never stops in the middle of a project even if he should; he always finishes. Always. I will say always one more time just to get the point across.

He is amazing at starting and finishing projects. I used to laugh that sometimes he starts things without thinking about them and then gets to redo them, which would make me mental, but he never complains no matter what he does anyways, so who cares?

I’ve never heard him yell at anyone. He never loses his temper, which I gave up on a long time ago (mom is Irish and we have, how you say, a fire in our bellies. That sounded odd but at least it was interesting).

Actually I did hear him holler something across a lake one time at Ryan and I on a floating shark being towed behind a boat. “Corey! You’re dragging a__!!!” Turns out I was slowing the boat down by sitting too far back on the shark… First and only time we’d ever heard dad the pastor say anything like that, Ryan laughed so hard he nearly fell out of the boat.. Dad was always fun on vacation.

Dad the moral.
As honest as the day is long, he would give you the shirt off his back. I never saw him back down in the face of a fight or when someone’s laziness or lack of gumption demanded a change in dad’s moral fibre.

Dad kept his cards close to his chest and locked stress up there too. I have a much easier time letting steam off, which is a nice way of saying you never have to wonder if I’m upset about something because I’ll straight up tell you.

Not the best politician because he was too honest and never quite understood dishonesty in people. Sadly I always did business as if the other person was trying to do me in. I was good at it and loved the game of it all, but dad’s approach was simpler and from a simpler time when you depended on people to survive, and they depended on you..

For sure I’m more complicated. Probably not a good thing but there’s a lot of weird stuff floating around in my head that my wife probably wishes wasn’t there. Dad has his sense of duty and that’s that.

So anyways…

We fought most of the time building the base of the greenhouse. That’s what you do with your dad sometimes. We both think we’re in charge and things can get tense, but we always walk towards the mess and figure it out. We rarely talk about feelings because dad doesn’t have them (I can feel my mom’s angry glare already…), and we rarely apologize to each other.

He does tell me he loves me all the time, which his dad only said to him once at the end of his life I think. Not that grandpa didn’t love him but he just didn’t say it, maybe he didn’t know how. Maybe dad doesn’t know how to say “that hurt my feelings”, and maybe I wouldn’t like it if he did. It just wouldn’t be him.

I took a church over from him and that was … interesting. A friend told me “when you turn the church over, you’d better leave town for a while.” Aka “Your dad is waaaay better at watching you change everything he built than you will be”. Ouch. And it was tough for both of us..

We don’t care because we love each other and the price of love is awkward sometimes. He has never crossed a line to hurt me and God forbid I ever do, even though we’ve hurt each other just by being two men in a world full of problems that need fixing with different ways to fix them.

He is who he is and I respect that. He taught me that loving Christ and people was the hardest and most noble thing a man could do. I’ve never seen anything in my tricky existence of dealing with pain to disagree with that.

Will I ever be rammy like him and just start projects without thinking it through like I do? No, I have google. I recommended he google something one day that he was trying to sort out and I could see the light come on in his eyes. Hilarious, dad..

Will I ever look at instructions or be able to focus long enough to put fifty seven thousand pieces together in a certain order? NEVER! I don’t have time to read stuff on paper! Instructions are for idiots! Idiots who have to come help me when I’ve done everything backwards and am crying like a little girl.

Stupid greenhouse.

That’s why I helped with the base and mom helped put the pieces together.

Dad has always been the common denominator.

Don’t know what I would do without him. One day I’ll have to figure that out on my own…

Corey Kope

Pastor. Father of 4 beauties. Devoted husband, Liverpool fan, and Jesus follower.

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