Father Friends

pretty sweet, huh
pretty sweet, huh (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It is already a beautiful morning here.  I sit in the quietness of my library, along my morning coffee, Its steam wafting up into the air. After I had prayed and was in midst of my meditation (who would have thunk?) I began to smile as I drifted to images and conversations of yesterday.  I had texted my friend Raj to keep a date open for Preeti’s birthday (perhaps a Beer tasting tour, perhaps a pub crawl), and I ended up giving him a lecture about taking care of himself. He is one of the best fathers I know. He absolutely without a doubt adores and loves his boys, but it’s the joy he takes out of it that is mesmerizing.  Yet more than that, he is also the most generous with friends and loved ones.  He is one of the few in my life who if more than 6 weeks passes by will make a huge effort so we can hang out. It hit me that friendship isn’t always about just sharing how your feelings, it’s about the little things we are willing to do to be around each other. I am truly lucky to have someone who has 10,000 things on his plate but makes me feel like I am still a priority. It’s a joyous feeling, and I wish him success in all aspects of his life.  I cautioned him not to forget himself while he took care of others.  Yup I have officially turned into my dad, giving advice to anyone I can catch! (love you dad!)

And yesterday got even better as I got to see one of my oldest friends from UCLA:  Rockwell.  Preeti was kind enough to suggest forcefully that I got and spend some quality time with him and his son.  I am so glad I did as I watched Rockwell treat his son like a young adult, and answer and respond to all of his son’s question. This is not new. Whenever I have seen Rockwell interact with his son, it is genuine interest , attention and love. It is this kind of attention that has led his son to know all the interacting friend and familial relationships in his father’s life. And it doesn’t stop there. When I watch Noel, Michael and their parents interact with their nephew and grandson, it is with such deep love that I am hypnotized. I don’t think I have met a more loving family than Rockwell’s. Each time I go there (and it’s not really ever enough) the parents greet me with such enthusiasm and love that I could spend hours just talking to them.  There is such a closeness that I feel like I am with family. And then there are Rockwell’s brothers.  Noel the oldest has always shown a warm heart and loving hugs that make me feel as I was a long-lost brother and the little one Michael has always made my feel like a loved old brother.

I guess what I am trying to say in my long-winded way that if I am ever lucky enough to be a father, I had already have 2 mentors in Raj and Rockwell. And I also have a family that I know I will be lucky to have for many decades to come. Lastly, the image I ended with was of Preeti as she spend the time to talk to me about the things we wish in our lives. I truly felt I have a partner who I can share anything with. So I’d like to say THANK YOU to the one ABOVE who made this all possible. I truly am grateful.


Bridge: A Blog Post

by Jemal Yarbrough

As I look at the beautiful picture done by my best friend Jemal, I realize how lucky I am to have the people I have in my life.  Sure, there were some days when I felt as if I was besieged and just taken advantage of, yet the reality was that no one did anything out of the ordinary.  It’s just that my perception of life has made question some basic things in my life such who are my friends?  I put so much importance in being liked that I forgot that no one can make you bad about yourself without your consent.

I realize now that I was unhappy with myself, and for that the only changed that was needed on my ability to deal with it.  Work has transformed into something I want to expand on, going out on new things a passion, working out so I can get the body I want a habit that I am unwilling to compromise for anyone.  I am now also around people who enable me my good habits rather than regret my past and my new decisions in life.  There are some in my life who are so unhappy with themselves that nothing I say or do can change that.  You know what, that’s their problem not mine.

I cannot change anyone except for myself, and until I do I will constantly be worried or annoyed about things that do not matter.  There are some near me in need of severe guidance but it’s not my job to fix them.  As hard as that is sometimes to recognize, I now know that I can only be there if needed or asked.  I was overly involved or affected by others and their habits when in fact the real culprit was my frustration with my failures or inability to get things done.  I can only be a bridge if people choose to use me as that tool.  I cannot force them to do things that they are unwilling or incapable of doing.  Does that mean I don’t care?  No, just that I no longer will interfere.  Just like the beautiful bridge, I will be here for the crossing when asked. 🙂