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Jenny Pisani


By: Jenny Pisani
College Now Course - BSS 1

Fathers inspire children to be the best of what they are. Children inspire men to tap into their deepest and greatest potential. These two statements are true. Yet somehow, good and loving fathers are too often the invisible and unnoticed parent. It's often hit or miss whether a man will have the tools or the inspiration to be the father he aspires to be. Sometimes fathers disconnected from their families don't know how much their children need them - or looking through their pain - how much they need their children. As I've experienced both worlds, I can truthfully say I may have possibly had the greatest father there ever was. How could I make such a statement, yet have had a "disconnected" father? This disconnection was not a voluntary one, but it was a disconnection that has brought me closer to my father than I have ever imagined.

My father, David, was born in Brooklyn, New York. As a young Italian boy, he was like any other - intelligent, playful and enjoyed all of which life had to offer. As he matured into a young adult it become apparent that he unfortunately had a severe arthritis known as "Anchylosis Spondilitus". This meant he had a debilitating arthritis of the spine, which at its most it is excruciatingly painful. Unfortunately, as with age, the condition only becomes progressively worse.

As a child, I can remember watching my father struggling to do a simple task such as putting on a sock - which was inevitably only accomplished by the aid of my mother. Despite my fathers pain, he was able to raise four children; myself as well as my three brothers. Though as a child my family went through difficult times due to my fathers sickness, we always remained a family bonded by love and hope. Refusing to give up on his family, my father strived to support us - ignoring any pain while rising from his bed each morning to set off to work as an architect. Starting at the very bottom of the business world, it was not easy to raise a family on a small budget - yet somehow we got through it. With an intellect and determination like my father had, nothing was impossible. He climbed the corporate ladder quickly, and within a few years had become Vice President of the noble construction company known as Tishman. Like the simple task of putting on a sock, I truly believe besides his love for his children, the love between himself and my mother was his foundation to never give up. Even with the simple mind of a child, because of my mother and father, I had learned early of the power and existence of pure love - for a spouse, as well as love for children.

As an eleven year old child, I had experienced my first real loss - my father. Eventually with a combination of a heart condition and the severe arthritis, it had come to be his time to leave this world, into a newer, peaceful one. Though I only had a mere eleven years with him - I believe they were the best years anyone could ask for. Maybe it was God's grace that I observed my father so well, or maybe it was pure child's love I have memories that no amount of loss could take away from me. It is through him I have learned to always strive for the best, and know that under no circumstances should I give up or doubt my ability to do great things.

Whether its inherited math skills, facial expressions, or even down to the small quirks of my father, he is always alive through me. Though there are the moments I wish I could have had more time to spend and learn about him in some ways it truly feels like I am a part of him, and I have had my scholastic success because of him. Because of him, I have learned to cherish and appreciate the intimate moments between loved ones. Many times when I was about ten years old, we would sit out on my deck during the summer's sunset. He would sit there smoking his cigar and I sitting next to him, most of the time in silence, but the good kind. It is these simple moments that I treasure. Though the loss of a father may be a horrible pain to endure, to know my father loved me is what has truly gotten me through such times. From this, I've learned to always express my love for friends and family. Because of him I have truly learned what is special in life, and how precious life genuinely is. The Gospel says that there is no greater love than this, "to lay down one's life for another." So the greatest love has to do with giving up yourself completely."