My dad wanted to give me the stars. But how would he do that?
We had this conversation when he was in the hospital. I asked him how he always had the moon and stars in his pocket.
He told me his secret.
When I was 2 dad devised a plan. It was a simple orchestrating of actions, by ordinary eyes, but extraordinary if you imagine the forethought of a loving dad. He went to a store and purchased a package of glow in the dark stars. They were left "charging" each day on a bathroom on a shelf or in the lightboxes. Before every outing that included being out at night, he would bring some. If we were out a long time during the day, he would "recharge" them on the dash. When night fell and the moment arose, he would make sure I was looking up at him. He was tall and lean. I knew he could touch the sky, but the stars seemed a tad out of reach, they weren't.
"That one looks close Neene!", he would say as he jumped to grab it from the night air.
"Let me cool it down a bit", softly he blew in his hands acting as if this little star was freshly caught from the heavens.
When he released the star into my care, it was glowing brightly and warm from his loving hands and breath. Every night this happened, I remember feeling as if I held the universe. He would laugh before reminding me of the rules to humane star captures.
"Remember Jannine, we can only hold the stars in our hands for a few moments, they must be sent back, they have been watching over us for millions of years!"
Before the star lost any of it's glow, he would throw it back into the night's care. I would stand there staring at the sky, like a dog being fooled by it's master's "fake ball throw" trick, searching for the newly placed star.
My dad would whistle as I searched, but he would always let me find it.
I put a glow in the dark, plastic star in his casket on the day of his funeral. But I knew it was real and would watch over him in his journey to heaven. I'm pretty sure it's hanging in the heavens now because every once in a while a star winks at me and I hear a familiar whistle.
It's those "little things" that put the stars in our children's eyes.
"A package of plastic stars, imagination and a heart overflowing with love"
Everyones's definition of being a magnificent father is different.
But that's mine.