Happy Baba’s Day 2013
I serve because I am holding fast to my dreams and want to teach others to be able to. I serve because my dad supported all of my outlandish dreams in my life, one of which brought me all the way across the world to South Africa.
When I was in the fourth grade (or so I think), I got this idea that I wanted to be a broadcast journalist. I would take my dad’s Sony camera and practice newscasts, film TV shows and infomericals with my friends in my spare time throughout middle school.
Some Christmases ago, my dad gave me a book called, “Breaking into Television”. It was some adult ‘all about’ the broadcast journalism industry and far beyond my reading capacity, but I kept that book.
As young as I was, my dad was already actively telling me to follow my dreams, which I followed to college as a journo major. Years later, staying true to a similar theme, “Walter Cronkite” would give me Christmas presents – like a snazzy voice recorder.
The Peace Corps has been a dream of mine for a good while. I always knew I was going to do it, regardless of what people would say. And yes, my mother told me otherwise. Anytime it was brought up, she told I’d get raped.
My dad just basically said, “Ok, cool. Go for it.”
So what’s this long anecdote have to do with Father’s Day? Well, I want to celebrate my father, who has never once told me I couldn’t do something and supported every big dream I’ve had. Maybe he’s learned after 24 years of dealing with me that I’m a stubborn piece of work and won’t take no for an answer, but at least he trusts that I am making the right decisions and everything will always work out.
Earlier this year he told me, as our favorite musician Bruce Springsteen said, “Liz, keep working on your dream.”
I wish all the kids I’ve come into contact with during my service years had someone in their life consistently like my dad. I try my best to be that person.
I’ll keep working on my dream. Thanks for always supporting it, Tom Warden!