Eugene Cho

growing in love with my father

I love my father but it took me nearly 39 years to tell him those words – face to face.  It only happened recently. Why or how? I’ll leave it to the psychoanalysts.

While I’ve always loved him so passionately, a big gap began to wedge in our relationship during my adolescent years which is probably the one thing I pray for as my eldest enters into middle school. For several years, I wasn’t quite sure why that was the case.

But after further consideration, I think it is directly linked to fishing. My fondest memory as a kid was going fishing with my father. Everything I know about fishing I learned from my father. But during my teenage years, I became too cool for my father and no longer responded to his invitations to go fishing.

I guess it’s for that reason that I try to fish as much with my father as possible. Every year, I try to take couple weeks to spend some time with my parents and to especially continue the fiery debate with my father:

“Who is a better fisherman?”

Recently, my family took a 3231 mile drive around the Northwest and Midwest and meeting up with my folks for some great quality time including Fishing with my Dad and fishing with my kids. In the video above, I just talked too much…pretending that I know more about fishing than my father but clearly, you can tell he knows what he’s doing. It was truly amazing to watch him scope the water, cast his lure, set the hook, and bring in the fish. Only those who fish regularly know how difficult it can be to bring in a fish when they’re buried under plants and weeds. [No fish were harmed in the filming of this video…]

Later, I caught a huge 4 pound bass and was feeling pretty good about myself. But my father goes out and snags this six pound bass to claim the title once again.  Win or lose, I don’t care anymore. I’m fishing with him again and that is my victory.

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10 Responses

  1. Don Bryant says:

    I grew up with a dad that hugged me and kissed me virtually everyday – and that never stopped until he died when I was 46. How blessed is that!!! I never found it within me to go through an adolescent rebellion. It never occurred to me. But strangely we never did anything together. What’s up with that!!! I remember once he threw ball with me for 2 or 3 minutes. That’s about all we ever did, that 2 or 3 minutes. My wife looked on in amazement when I balled like a baby when we saw “Field of Dreams.”

  2. Matt says:

    that’s awesome. My fondest memories with my dad is working at his store as a kid…. lol.

  3. […] growing in love with my father « eugene cho eugenecho.wordpress.com/2009/09/18/growing-in-love-with-my-father – view page – cached I love my father but it took me nearly 39 years to tell him those words – face to face. It only happened recently. Why or how? I’ll leave it to the — From the page […]

  4. sam says:

    E-
    your post has ironic timing for me. i will be leaving for a family trip in a couple days. 7 night cruise to mexico. this would normally sound like a grand time, but a cloud of dread looms over me, as the date approaches. this will be our first family trip in over 20 years. i cannot help but have ominous thoughts of what will happen on the trip.
    I too have had less than a perfect relationship with my father. we have even butted heads on things leading up to the trip. my only thoughts are of how i can avoid him for the entire time we are together. lets hope that my experience can somewhat mirror yours. that this time was given to create a bridge of closeness in our relationship, and not a divide. I think prayer and patience might be the key.
    fishing was a activity my father and i also did when i was younger (i no longer enjoy it). Heck, maybe the ship will let us drop a line into the water together? Thanks for the post.
    sam.

  5. Joe Chavez says:

    When I read the first two paragraphs of the post, I thought I was reading my the biography of my relationship with my dad. He and I grew apart (or maybe it was me growing away from him) when I got into high school.

    It really wasn’t until I got married and had a family of my own that we started growing back together, a process that still continues.

    Like you, I’ll leave the reasons to the psychoanalysts.

  6. tewkewl says:

    “No fish were harmed…” does it matter any fish were harmed? There’s nothing wrong with catching your fish. Either that was a sly joke, or a little too PC for my taste.

  7. Joseph Lee says:

    Yah, definitely had good times fishing with my dad, not sure what it is but for some reason, fishing and crabbing was always a good time. Nice post pe.

  8. Eugene Cho says:

    @tewkewl: you must not know my sense of humor yet.

    it’s pretty dry.

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stuff, connect, info

One Day’s Wages

My Instagram

Back safely from Iraq, Lebanon, and Jordan. Thanks for your prayers. 
I have numerous stories to share but for now, the following came up in every conversation with Iraqi/Syrian refugees:

1 Have tea with us. Or coffee. Or juice. Or something with lots of sugar in it. Or better yet, all of the above.
2 We want peace. We want security. 
3 We hate ISIS. 
4 We just want to go home.
5 Please don't forget us.

Please don't forget them... Father, please bless and protect these Iraqi and Syrian "refugee" children that have already endured so much. Protect their hearts and mind from unfathomable trauma. Plant seeds of hope and vision in their lives. And as we pray for them, teach us how to advocate for them. Amen. "We don't call them refugees. We call them relatives. We don't call them camps but centers. Dignity is so important." -  local Iraqi priest whose church has welcomed many "relatives" to their church's property

It's always a privilege to be invited into peoples' home for tea - even if it's a temporary tent. This is an extended Yezidi family that fled the Mosul, Iraq area because of ISIS. It's indeed true that Christians were targeted by ISIS and thatbstory muat be shared but other minority groups like the Yezidis were also targeted. Some of their heartbreaking stories included the kidnapping of their sister. They shared that their father passed away shortly of a "broken heart." The conversation was emotional but afterwards, we asked each other for permission to take photos. Once the selfies came out, the real smiles came out.

So friends: Pray for Iraq. Pray for the persecuted Church. Pray for Christians, minority groups like the Yezidis who fear they will e completely wiped out in the Middle East,, and Muslims alike who are all suffering under ISIS. Friends: I'm traveling in the Middle East this week - Iraq, Lebanon, and Jordan. (Make sure you follow my pics/stories on IG stories). Specifically, I'm here representing @onedayswages to meet, learn, and listen to pastors, local leaders, NGOs, and of course directly from refugees from within these countries - including many from Syria.

For security purposes, I haven't been able to share at all but I'm now able to start sharing some photos and stories. For now, I'll be sharing numerous photos through my IG stories and will be sharing some longer written pieces in couple months when ODW launches another wave of partnerships to come alongside refugees in these areas. Four of us are traveling together also for the purpose of creating a short documentary that we hope to release early next year.

While I'm on my church sabbatical, it's truly a privilege to be able to come to these countries and to meet local pastors and indigenous leaders that tirelessly pursue peace and justice, and to hear directly from refugees. I've read so many various articles and pieces over the years and I thought I was prepared but it has been jarring, heartbreaking,  and gut wrenching. In the midst of such chaos, there's hope but there's also a lot of questions, too.

I hope you follow along as I share photos, stories, and help release this mini-documentary. Please tag friends that might be interested.

Please pray for safety, for empathy, for humility and integrity, for divine meetings. Pray that we listen well; To be present and not just be a consumer of these vulnerable stories. That's my biggest prayer.

Special thanks to @worldvisionusa and @worldrelief for hosting us on this journey. 9/11
Never forget.
And never stop working for peace.

Today, I had some gut wrenching and heart breaking conversations about war, violence, and peacemaking. Mostly, I listened. Never in my wildest imagination did I envision having these conversations on 9/11 of all days. I wish I could share more now but I hope to later after I process them for a few days.

But indeed: Never forget.
And never stop working for peace.
May it be so. Amen. Mount Rainier is simply epic. There's nothing like flying in and out of Seattle.

#mountrainier
#seattle
#northwestisbest

my tweets

  • Boom. Final fishing trip. Grateful. A nice way to end my 3 month sabbatical. #catchandrelease twitter.com/i/web/status/9… || 20 hours ago
  • Christians: May we be guided by the Scriptures that remind us, "Seek first the Kingdom of God" and not, "Seek first the kingdom of America." || 21 hours ago
  • Every convo with Iraqi/Syrian refugees included: 1 Have tea with us 2 We want peace 3 We hate ISIS 4 We want to go home 5 Don't forget us || 3 days ago
  • Back safely from Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan to assess @OneDaysWages' partnerships & to film mini-documentary on refugee crisis. So many emotions. || 3 days ago
  • Pray for Mexico. For those mourning loved ones. For those fighting for life - even under rubbles. For rescue workers. Lord, in your mercy. || 3 days ago
  • Don't underestimate what God can do through you. God has a very long history of using foolish and broken people for His purposes and glory. || 6 days ago