Since I’ve been back from Armenia (it’s been two weeks), I’ve been trying to reacclimate to American life (one thing I keep saying is “why is everything so damn big?!”) and my dear friends have been a huge help. I want to call out one friend in particular, Arda Garabedian, whose father Krikor passed away suddenly last year this time on October 20, 2014. Arda had kissed her father goodbye that morning, headed to work, then came home to learn that he had collapsed in the afternoon.
When we met up to catch up over the weekend, I asked Arda how she’s doing, and she opened up about some of the sweet ways her dad used to shower her with love throughout their time together. Each anecdote inspired me more than the next. My favorite is when every now and again, Arda would come to her room to find that he had printed random advice and left it on her bed. Such a beautiful way to inspire and surprise your child. And the best part is that she’ll be able to keep the notes as reminders for years to come. While recently digging through her drawers, Arda found one of the more profound notes her dad shared with her (below). Words to live by.
Another one of my favorite quotes he shared: “Surround yourself with positive people.” And from what I remember about him (before the Garabedians moved to LA, Krikor and my mom worked together in Hamazkayin San Francisco for many years) and from what Arda says, he was one such positive person. In the midst of happiness, he would randomly grab Arda and dance with her in the kitchen. He was the man who would literally stop and smell the roses and pick one for his daughter, telling her that she’s more beautiful than the flower in her hand.
If Arda was tired after work, her dad would make her a meal and if she didn’t have enough time to make breakfast in the mornings, he would run out after her and give her something to nibble on. If there was a family dispute, he would gather his family in the living room to talk it out as a group. Arda jokingly says she and her brothers would roll their eyes, but in retrospect it was such progressive parenting. There are dozens and dozens of more stories like this that Arda recounts as she smiles wide, knowing that she’s lucky to have shared such good times with her father. We can all learn from such beautiful stories and souls. Asdvaz hokin loosavoreh ❤