Thursday, November 3, 2011

My Father Figures: My Step-Dad (but really my Dad), Mark Seelbach

My parents were divorced when I was 4. Bad divorce. That's all I'm going to say. After a few years we moved to the West side of Columbus, to the now super scary but then amazingly wonderful Lincoln Village, a huge apartment complex where my grandparents lived. Until I was 9 it was mom and me. I guess we were living hand to mouth, but I never knew it. My mom worked hard to provide for us and childhood was good.


She liked to eat at Bob Evans and one day a waitress that she knew introduced her to another diner. They hit it off and started dating. Then one day he came over for dinner and I could not get over this wierd guy that mom had invited over. Then I went with mom to his bachelor apartment where I noticed he had Omni magazine, which, at the time, I thought was like Playboy, and I was mortified. But he turned out to be okay (and for those of you that don't know, Omni is a now defunct but iconic sci fi magazine, which said a lot about Mark Seelbach, though I didn't know it at the time) and one day in November 1981 they got married and I had a stepdad.


Mark had no children. He wasn't used to shy, sensitive pre-adolescent girls but he did the best he could. In time, I figured out that he was pretty shy, too, and geeky. He liked jazz music, which I hadn't paid much attention to before then, and played the trumpet. We started going to the Methodist church because he grew up Methodist (in Youngstown, OH, which has an interesting population of Polish, German, and Italian people mostly, so I was introduced to Perogies, red cabbage, and all variety of German sausage). I now love good funky jazz, I still consider myself Methodist, and I LOVE brats and saurkraut.


When computers came to the forefront in the late 80's he started working for the software industry, which began a lifelong love of computers and technology. Yes, my dad is a geek. A big one. He loves Star Trek and Dr. Who, collects vintage toys particularly GI Joes and those with a sci fi theme. My mom loves the geek stuff, too, and I was being molded, so when we went to the Dr. Who convention when I was in Middle School it was quite a moment. Did I mention he loves computers? He currently works as an auditor (he has a degree in accounting), but the computer love is not going away.


He has been a wonderful father to me. He really would do anything for me. When I need him, he's there. I know that he's proud of me, even though he hasn't said it in so many words. He doesn't say things like that, those emotional type things, but with all of the caring and everything he's done for me over the years, I know. You know what I mean?


Amanda said...

He sounds wonderful, you are very lucky to have such a guy in your life. Makes me miss my dad, but a nice reminder of how wonderful fathers can be.

Rachele said...

What an awesome tribute to the male role model in your life. It's the little surprises that catch us off guard that later mean so much.

Francesca said...

Aw, I have such a similar story! My stepdad is the greatest but is the same in that he doesn't always express his emotions very well, nor does he like to come out and say he is so proud! Aren't we lucky girls :)

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