Today is an historic day. My father turned 87. I have been thinking a lot about aging and the nextgenerations. I am fortunate beyond words to still have my parents in my life. Especially because my fatherhad a coronary in 1964, quintuple bypass in 1987 and various stents since. Dad and Mom are so bright, wonderful and interesting, and always have been. When I was younger, they were the “coolest” parents of any of my friends and often commented upon thus.
Next weekend my high school class is having a reunion. One of my dear bff’s is also having her reunion (different class). She is excited and I have been teasing her about having her dress for the reunion for at least a year(although it really has only been since May, but still). In any case, I bowed out of reunions after the 25th, its fun to see old buds, but in truth I didn’t make the most of my highschool years in a way I would consider valuable now. You know kids. And for at least 20 years, I thought I had a story there, but now I just chuckle realizing most any 16 year old has a story there and mine is not particularly unique and there are many mistakes but few aha moments that I can remember. In any case, one high school friend is coming in Weds from Washington state and another from Palm Springs and another from Denver on Tuesday and they have all written say hello and can we have a visit and I have to admit it is both an honor and a thrill that they would even think of me because when I thinkof high school, I can’t imagine ANYONE thinking of or wondering about me and THAT is just how insecure I was then. It’s crazy I know, as I am sure that anyone who knows me now would not think of me as shy or insecure, but life is the proverbial journey and it took quite a journey for me to find myself.
So on this day when my father was born, I doubt that anyone who knew his Oklahoma City mother and father imagined that he would become an University of Oklahoma graduate, a WWII Navy vet, a community leader and politician, a business success, marry into a founding Kansas family, father two daughters (an artist/higher ed/arts grant writer/educator and a computer programmer/career counselor) and ultimate have two grandchildren, one a great journalism teacher and the other a PA who is finishing his rotations and thinking seriously of going on the med school as I heard him tell his grandmother today. Whew!
Many of those who know me think I am a Bonfy as that is my last name, but that is my name by marriage from 22 years ago and I have kept in honor of my son, in-laws and ex, Devon, all of whom love dearly. So my birth name was Dumenil, so I present to you: my father Charles Dumenil, mother Jeanne Dumenil, Marc Perkins (nephew), Valerie Perkins (sister), and Ashley Perkins Watkins (niece). I think you can probably tell which of us are extroverts and the one who wanted to not show up on Facebook (blur intentional). Happy Birthday, daddy!