Thursday, January 12, 2012

Splitting a Candy Bar

Our daily lives are cluttered with countless objects, some holding strong sentimental value, while others just seem to float around like specs of dust, merely there to satisfy our selfish, fleeting needs.  But sadly, most of these possessions and their attached memories will be ultimately forgotten through the passage of time, as the hope chests within our minds are continually filled with newer and newer objects, leaving less and less space for those older things that had once rang so true to our past selves.  But for me, there will always be one item in particular that I can honestly say has helped shape my life.  A thing so special it's been strapped securely to the cliffs of my memory banks, so it may not fall victim to the rapid river below.  A river so fierce, that it's forever determined to destroy all that is beautiful, as it drags life's most faded memories away from all recollection. 

And the reason this item has been so life changing for me, can be related to the simple act of arguing and how it affects each and every one of our lives.  If it be a dozen bloodthirsty texts sent and received over misinterpreted frowny faces, or a brutal duel between two overly sharpened tongues, no matter how or why a heated moment occurs, all that truly matters in the end, is the end.  A nasty fight with an even nastier conclusion has the power to shatter the bonds of even the closest of people, potentially to the point of no return.

And that is why my father would always try his hardest to end the most terrible of arguments on the happiest of terms.  Each time stopping, softly smiling, and then asking if we wanted to split a Hershey's candy bar. And at that moment, I'd always find it strange how such a simple gesture could take away so much anger, and in turn, create the kind of honest happiness normally lost within the tribulations of life.  I'd then simply nod and give him a smile back, as he'd break the bar in half, making everything right in the world once again.  

And all these years later as I think back on my happy childhood and the strong bond I still share with my dad, I realize how things could have gone quite differently and am grateful everyday for his immense wisdom.  And I can only hope that someday my own children will find my father's tradition as magical as I did, realizing that its true meaning goes well beyond a sweet and sugary coating.

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