OK, here we go! It’s time to start the journey for real.
In the past, I have always started with my grandparents because I wanted to protect the identity of the living individuals. Unfortunately, my mother passed away October of 2012. Now, I will start with my parents.
My father was David Isaac Spangler. He was born November 12, 1928 in Clarksville, Red River Co., Texas. His parents were David Franklin Spangler and Ora Elizabeth Gamble. He died April 13, 2000 in Paris, Lamar Co., Texas.
My mother was Patricia Ann Forbes. She was born February 21, 1934 in Jefferson, Marion Co., Texas. Her parents were George Charles Forbes and Winnie Ida Stevenson. She passed away on October 17, 2012 in Kaufman, Kaufman Co., Texas.
My parents weren’t perfect. Does anyone here know of any parent who is? All parents make mistakes and I, as a parent, can attest to that! What I will talk about in the next part of this message is my personal opinion. Everyone perceives facts in different ways. What I perceive as a part of learning how to be a parent, another may see as abusive or just downright mean! So, draw what you want from this but remember, it’s just my opinion.
I think I was much closer to my mother growing up. My dad was a “man’s man” of sorts. he had to be macho, mean, or whatever it took to be seen that way. I’ve never felt that way. I have tried my best to avoid that appearance. Perhaps that is why we were never close. Perhaps he thought of me as a failure because I was not “macho” enough. I’ll never really know because we never really had a great relationship. My mother was always there for me. Others saw her as weak or simple but I saw her as my protector and someone who was always willing to encourage me to do better.
Now, does this mean that I hated my dad? Well, for many years that is how I interpreted it. I grew up with impressions that a father was supposed to be there for his son, to encourage him, to teach him and help him. All I can really recall from my dad was that he was constantly saying “You’re worthless. You’ll never amount to anything!” and I let that rule my life for a very long time! Thank God for my wonderful wife who helped me to realize that I was a lot more than others thought I was!
As I grow older, I can relate now to how my dad felt. I’m sure he wanted all his kids to succeed and wanted the best for them. He was just more vocal about it. I see my children make mistakes and I want so much to say something but I have to be a little more careful because I know what the wrong words can do. I’ve made a lot of mistakes with my kiddos and I have had to apologize to them on more than one occasion. It’s hard being a parent.
My opinions of my dad have changed substantially in the last few years. I just hope that he was proud of me at the end because I think I did pretty good!
My relationship with my mother was a lot different. We were so much alike. She was peaceful, quite, laid-back. She loved the simple things. It didn’t take a lot to make her happy. I can recall coloring gingham coloring books with her, when I was a teenager! Those were good times and times I can look back on with so much pleasure. She has always had a kind word for me and never failed to let me know how much she loved me! I regret that as I got busy with my own life and raising my own children that we lost a lot of that closeness but I know she was proud of me and my little family. Just seeing the light in her eyes when we visited was all I needed.
As I said earlier, my parents were not perfect. If I am to believe that God works out all things, then I must believe that God had his hand on my parents. They taught us what we needed to know and, if nothing else, they taught us to be strong and resilient! Hey, everyone puts the grade in the final results and neither myself or my siblings are doing too bad. We’re not in jail. We are honest, hard-working people and you have to give credit where credit is due! We were shaped by our environment and I really don’t want to know what my life would have been like if it had been different. I love my life!
As much as any other person this blog may mention, my parents will always be the potter who shaped me out of a worthless piece of clay. I loved them both and miss them so much. As I grow older, one thought that pleases me is that I can look forward to seeing them again!
As you read this blog, know that the person writing it was taught by these two wonderful parents.
Have a great day,