When I think of my dad, the scenery that flashes into my mind is (and always will be) the mist-shrouded mountains around Tahkenitch Lake. The smells are mud, moss, and wet hound dog. I can still hear the sound of Rattler baying across the lake, and feel the splinters from the old bridge where I would sit at night, unknowing and uncaring about what time a clock might read somewhere in a distant land, and drop a lure in the water — only the light of the moon and the old Coleman lamp keeping me company on the wooden joist that might have come from a tree Dad helped harvest. These things were his gift to me, and looking back I see just how rare and precious they were. You can’t hunt bear in that country any more, at least not the old way, and my dad’s life (and my life) carries hardly a glimmer of those years dominated by towering Douglas Fir trees.
We both spend more time at the keyboard than in the woods, which isn’t so bad since we both love the written word; we’re quite happy to soak in it like we used to get soaked by the Oregon rain. But those were the days that defined for me who my father is: a man who can climb a ridge through brush so thick it could tear your hide off, carry a bear out of a canyon on his back — even after it had been broken in a logging accident, and never gives up on a lost hound.
He may not be able to do much of that now, but the determination, perseverance, and loyalty remain as strong as ever; and I so admire that he has allowed God to draw him closer and make his heart sensitive to needs of the souls around him.
Thank you for the great memories, Dad. Thank you for sharing your strength and your weakness with me, and helping me find my own.
Megan La Follett grew up in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, where she explored her first beloved sanctuary from the back of her pony named Silver. Now she’s a wife and mother, an author, and the founder of Storymaker Society — a community to inspire, encourage, and equip writers to finish their first book.
Her book, The Practice of the Presence of God for Modern-Day Moms, releases on October 17, 2017.
To learn more about Storymaker Society, visit www.storymakersociety.com