At age 8, your dad buys you an ice cream. You thanked him by dripping it all over his lap.

But some of us got an extra spoon so he could share it.

When you were 9 years old, he paid for piano lessons. You thanked him by never even bothering to practice.

But some of us made him smile with all the silly little tunes we came up with on our own.

When you were 10 years old he drove you all day, from soccer to football to ballet lessons. You thanked him by jumping out of the car and never looking back.

But some of us ran up and hugged him after the game when we won.

When you were 11 years old, he took you and your friends to the movies. You thanked him by asking to sit in a different row.

But some of us asked him all about his favorite part the whole ride home.

When you were 12 years old, he warned you not to watch certain TV shows. You thanked him by waiting until he left the house.

But some of us still had it on when he came back, and he watched it with us while warning us about the bad parts.

When you were 13, he suggested a haircut that was in fashion. You thanked him by telling him he had no taste.

But some of us teased him back about his hair, and he said he liked our long hair better anyway.

When you were 14, he paid for a month away at summer camp. You thanked him by forgetting to write a single letter.

But some of us called him once a week and hugged him so hard he fell over when we finally came home.

When you were 15, he came home from work, looking for a hug. You thanked him by having your bedroom door locked.

But some of us kissed him at dinner and asked how work was.

When you were 16, he taught you how to drive his car. You thanked him by taking it every chance you could.

But some of us only took it out with him so he could teach us. We were too scared without him.

When you were 17, he was expecting an important call. You thanked him by being on the phone all night.

But some of us had our own phones.

When you were 18, he cried at your high school graduation. You thanked him by staying out partying until dawn.

But some of us had that party…with him.

When you were 19, he paid for your college tuition, drove you to campus and carried your bags. You thanked him by saying good-bye outside the dorm so you wouldn't be embarrassed in front of your friends.

But some of us never went in the dorm, because we went to school close enough to our family to stay with them.

When you were 25, he helped to pay for your wedding, and he told you how deep he loved you. You thanked him by moving halfway across the country.

But some of us ruined our honeymoons crying about how much we were going to miss him, and lit up like Christmas came early when he came to visit.

When you were 50, he fell ill and needed you to take care of him. You thanked him by reading about the burden parents become to their children.

But some of us threw away the book, disgusted, and called our siblings to see how he was.

And then, one day, he quietly died. And everything you never did came crashing down like thunder on YOUR HEART.

But some of us had memories to fall back on.


I just got married and went through a very painful separation period from my family, who I'd lived with up until that point. Then, I saw this on someone's profile, and went to write a version more in tune with what I've gone through in my life. It's not much, but it really comes from my heart.