I called it “The Stare.”
The gaze usually appeared on Sunday mornings when everyone was home. Finished with the funnies — that’s what we called the comic pages then — and a couple of coffees tossed back, he would recline in his easy chair, one hand behind his head and take inventory of his youngest son from across the room.
I would look up several times and there they would be. For minutes on end, I couldn’t escape them, these laser-beam-focused peepers, sizing me up, stalking me.
Nothing was ever said but plenty was being communicated.
I didn’t know what the look meant back then, but I do now.
Anyone with a child knows what it’s like to love one. Sometimes you say the words — he often did — and sometimes you sit back and soak in what you had a hand in creating.
That’s what my dad was doing.
When I became a father, I made a promise to myself to love my children as much as he loved his.
I hope I am succeeding.