Tenderness at Walmart

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Today, I had a sentimental moment in front of Walmart. My dad and I were doing some last-minute Christmas shopping. I needed to run in quickly to grab some glass bottle pendants for gifts that I am making for a few of my friends. My dad opted to wait in the truck.

Before shutting the door, my dad said to call him after I checked out. So, I ran in and did my shopping. I walked past the aisle I needed to be in three times, but I did get to where I needed to be. I purchased my items and then called my dad.

When I was outside in the rain, waiting for my dad to pull up in his truck, I remembered something that made me very sad:

When I was in middle school and early high school, my dad would occasionally pick me up after school. He had this beat-up, ugly black truck that smelled of hard labor. When I would see that truck in the distance, I would run so that I could catch him before he got close to the school­­; I was mortified when that truck would appear. I would wonder why he didn’t take my mom’s car or why she didn’t just come.

Today, he pulled up in a very nice truck. He works in a much more stylish way these days. However, I wouldn’t have cared what he pulled up in. I started thinking about how much people change when they get (*I’m going to use this next word even though I hate to use it) older. It felt good just knowing I had someone to pick me up. It is so easy to feel alone in this chaotic world and I have the best parents a guy could ask for. Also, you begin to realize that people in your life will not always be around and/or able to pick your butt up from school or wherever you may be. We rode off with a small tear in the corner of my eye.

It’s almost Christmas and, like appreciating any old truck that pulls up as long as the driver is someone I love, friends and family are all the presents I need these days. Amex can’t buy a new bestie, sibling, or parent.

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