Honoring a Great Man
I’ve spent years talking about my incredible mother. If you haven’t actually met her in person, you probably have a good idea of what she’s all about based on the opening essay in CLEAN FOOD – “My Mother’s Kitchen.” She is my friend and role model, and has inspired me in my own journey through her approach and commitment to cooking clean, healing naturally, and maintaining good health and balance for herself and her whole family. But in fact, there was (and is) more than just my mom in my mother’s kitchen.
Today I am celebrating my dad. Of course, today is a national holiday for another great man, Martin Luther King, born on exactly the same day in 1929, plus Michelle Obama, Benjamin Franklin, Al Capone, Muhammed Ali and Betty White, too (except all in different years). All told, I’d say that January 17th is quite a prestigious day! And while it’s not difficult to admire the accomplishments of these other greats, for me, the real start is my dad. My dad – who is one of the brightest people I know. Who is one of the most ethical, and hard working business people I’ve ever met (having retired just a few months ago!). Who can be found downhill skiing one weekend, cutting down trees the next, and taking it to the links as soon as Spring has sprung. My dad may not be the instigator of healthy eating that my mother is, but he is a role model for hearty living, balance, priorities and family, and reminds me every day that eating clean is only one key to living well.
Milestones like my dad’s 82nd birthday can be double edged – the joy of celebrating the person combined with a certain heaviness of heart that goes hand-in-hand with marking time as it passes. And yet, in my father’s own words, “When you reach these milestones, you celebrate.” So today, I celebrate you, Dad. It’s an honor to share this lifetime with you. Happy, healthy birthday!