My father is still SO special to me, even though he died 17 and a half years ago. Apart from him being a really great father, he was an amazing human being.
He is my inspiration for this Blog. And, you can read about “why” I dedicated this blog to Daddy at the About Me tab at the top toolbar.
This post is all about Daddy as well as fathers’ views of the world and what is special about how they parent.
My father, Arthur, was the second-youngest of 4 children, and he was the successful head-of-household at age 13, after his father died, unexpectedly, from surgery, in the 1930s, before anti-biotics. He was the natural-born leader, and even his older siblings and mother understood that. He took over his father’s duties in the family business, teamed with his mother, and he started another successful shipping business, too, while still in his teens. Then Pearl Harbor happened.
My father was in the United States Marine Corps all through World War 2. Right after Pearl Harbor, Arthur, and his older brother volunteered for the Navy. But, the recruiters saw Daddy had “the right stuff”, so he became a Marine – the best of the best.
While his brother served out the war aboard Admiral Nimitz’s ship in the Pacific, my father was fighting in the jungles of the Pacific. The last and biggest battle he was in was Guadalcanal. There he distinguished himself with great bravery; got all his men out alive (from behind enemy lines) and was haunted by the memories, in some form, for the rest of his life.
He was a really, gritty, courageous man, so he just put it aside, as best he could, and got on with his life. They didn’t “know” about post-traumatic stress syndrome etc back then. That’s why those who served truly deserve Tom Brokaw’s honorific as “The Greatest Generation”. He went forward, and made a difference in this world, even after all the horror.
After Guadalcanal, he was mustered out of the Corps, as his malaria became severe, so he was sent home to “rest” completely at a Naval Hospital relatively near his home in the mid-West. Next, he was returned to civilian life, and immediately he worked in the War Department to design ways to help the soon-to-be-successful invasion of Japan by creating innovative engineering solutions for air-lifting large vehicles, in pieces, so they could be re-assembled and still work perfectly. As I said, he was brilliant.
He took Life on its terms and triumphed. He had married my mother, in Australia, before Guadalcanal and later he fathered his 3 children; created many world patents in metallurgy (he was a self-taught metallurgical engineer) which, at one time, were used in just about every American and Australian car in the world; established several businesses on 2 continents and fought the beginnings of diabetes and heart disease in innovative and constructive ways, at each stage of his circumstances.
He was a man who deeply respected women, and my mother was a truly equal partner in their 47 year marriage. My father was a great cook and most days he would come home with my mother from their business, pick us up from school, start dinner, help with whatever else was needed and return to work, later, if needed.
He and I did all the fresh marketing in the wonderful Victorian-style open markets in Australia on the week-ends. He never let us buy junk food!
We always felt he was there when we needed him, and he was SO smart, that he could help with ANYTHING.
I’d say around 1952 or so, I remember seeing Daddy with glass tubes and testing paper, and I was told he was “spilling sugar”. I did not really know what that meant, but he did. He fought getting full-blown diabetes, but about 15 years later, he walked into our HMO’s hospital emergency room in California and announced to the doctor that he “knew” he had diabetes. She resisted his diagnosis, until all the tests came back quite clearly, that he was correct.
After that, he followed every instruction given him, to the letter. He hoped the doctors knew what they were doing. They were excellent physicians, but they really did not know how much they did not know!
Diabetes is NOT simple, and Medicine back then and now, is on the wrong track.
I say this because many of you are being told the same strategies as Arthur was, and I am here to say “most of it is wrong”.
My father, as fathers often do, parented me to know that “the world was mine”; it was up to me to take the lead and use my talents; no door was closed unless I closed it. I don’t close doors very often. He was an excellent mentor. I learned to think clearly and independently from his lead. I never was a follower, ever.
And, so I am a fierce champion of the information denied my father, and that which has come along later. It would have helped if physicians were honest about what they didn’t know, because then his great mind would have dwelled more on “solving” diabetes. Instead, they acted like they had all the answers, and his strict adherence to their regimen just led him downward into the spiral of heart disease, one of the first artificial heart valve surgeries, to amputation of both legs, and finally hospital-induced staphylococcus aureus infection, while fighting pneumonia, that winter. All bacteria can only live and assert themselves in an acidic environment. My father died because his diabetic treatments made him cellularly acidic.
Arthur’s huge investment in hours of gentle walking— to stabilize blood-sugars — daily, did nothing to help him. Nor did his medications really act in his best biochemical interest, instead making him more and more acidic with their presence, and even moreso as each new drug, for each new “symptom” appeared.
My father had no bad habits, always ate sensibly and healthily and moderately and yet family-history was something he and his oldest sister could not beat. They each got diabetes. Or was it really family history?
Diabetes is hanging over all of his heirs, too, but it will never be his Legacy. He is much more than that. And, I have more choices than he did.
I am the first in the next generation to finally just cross over the edge to being diabetic, after I have been fighting it successfully for at least 20 years and maybe as much as 40, as I think back, yes successfully, by diet alone. I think it was tremendous Stress that pushed me “over” and I will have to detoxify and calm down before the correct diet, can alone keep me safe.
Knowing what I have learned with my independent mind, I think I can return to being non-diabetic, and I think you can, too, by understanding pH and how acidic biochemistry is the root cause of all disease. Diabetes is really a forced reaction to overwheming cellular acidity, I believe, which may or may not reflect a weakness due to familial biochemical prediliction or predisposition.
I say this theory with conviction. Daddy fashioned me with rigor, and I thank him for it. I know what I am made of and that is priceless.
And, I thank my father for never limiting my world; for encouraging me to find my passion and be true to myself; for respecting my choices; for waiting until I asked for his counsel and then giving me the benefit of his marvelous knowledge and depth of experience in an realistic, non-self serving way.
And, for all of that, he was a tender man, and I always knew how much he loved all of us. He was never afraid to show that. He was an exceptional father, and such a rare human being.
And so I laud him today, with the Marine Corps’ stirring call “Semper Fi !” (Semper Fidelis — Always Faithful), for he was faithful to his values and culture, faithful to his country, faithful to his family and faithful to himself.
I hope you have a wonderful day, tomorrow, Father’s Day, either by being with your father or thinking of him and the difference he hopefully made for you, too.
Best to all — Em
(c)2007 Em https://diabetesdietdialogue.wordpress.comIf you want to use or quote from my article, please include the full copyright citation, with website address. Thanks!