“Can I Speak to Dr. Pearson, Please? This is His Son”
More than likely, I will never get to say those words again. At least, not at a Veterinary clinic where he is the Head Hauncho Vet. My dad, Dr. Steve Pearson, retired yesterday from 40 plus years of stitching cats, stuffing gauze, and sticking his hand up . . . let’s just say various parts of every form of domestic animal one can imagine. He has seen it and done it all. If you can smell it on a cat or dog, he has smelt it. I promise. Remind me sometime to tell you about the time the Pearson family was eating hot dogs and he got a phone call about a cat that got hit by a car. Fun times.
I figure I have asked the question posed in the subject line above around 3,000 times in my life. Ever since I knew how to use a telephone I have called to talk to my dad. And every time, I used the same words. Know why? Because if I identified myself as his son, he would move heaven and earth to get to the phone. He always . . . and I mean always. . . made a bee line for the phone when I called. Rare was the time when his secretary or receptionist would say, “I’m sorry Matt, but he is in surgery.” Not because he was not in surgery. No, no. He was often in surgery. I was only told he couldn’t talk to me during a surgical procedure if someone was not able to hold the phone up to his ear. That’s right. When possible, dad would have someone hold the phone up to his ear so he could talk to me while in surgery (thanks Vicki!).
If dad ever got sick of me calling him at the clinic I never knew it. All of my life I have felt that if I called, he was thrilled and was eager to hear my voice on the other side of the phone. Never once did I ever dream he was wanting to hurry and get off so he could get to ‘more important’ things. No. Whatever he was doing at the time I called was far less important than talking to me or one of his other children.
Much more could be said about Dr. Pearson (my mom wrote a nice post yesterday). I could write a book about my dad. Perhaps I will one day. But suffice it say at present that I will never forget, and will forever be positively affected by the simple gesture of him wanting to eagerly talk to his boy when he called him at work. You know why he wanted to talk to me when I called? Because he wanted to talk to me and to know what was going on with me.
Dads, do your children know that if they call they will have a thrilled dad on the other end of the line? Do they know that no matter what is going on at work, talking hearing from you is far more important?
Dad, congratulations. Not just for 40 plus years of a remarkable career in Veterinary medicine. But for loving me more than that and demonstrating for me what balancing work and family looks like. Thank you!
I love you!!!