(as interviewed and written by Tessa Hull)
“I’ve never met my dad. At least, not that I can remember.”
Chandler was only a one-year old the last time he saw his dad. Despite the fact that his dad left when Chandler was just a baby, Chandler is one of the most positive people I’ve ever known.
He says, “I think I would be a lot different if my dad stayed because from what I know about him, he is very different than me. Overall, I think that not having him in my life is probably for the best. Growing up without him didn’t phase me too much because for the first 8 years of my life, I lived with my mom and grandparents, so my grandpa was a father figure to me. However, as I have gotten older, I realized that not having a dad is a common problem for kids. I want to be a choir teacher, so I can be a positive male figure for students because I have learned that it is important to seek out someone who can be good role model in your life, no matter if it is your dad or not. I just want to use my experience as a positive impact on others because I choose to look on the bright side of things and people in my life.”
Choosing to focus on the positive things in life isn’t easy. I have been dating Chandler for 3 years, and he has seen me through some of the best and the worst times of my life, including the death of my own father. He is known for being a happy person-- and there are plenty of people who would back me up on that. While I have been getting through the loss my dad, I look at “happy” people differently. I find myself assuming they have never dealt with anything traumatizing or hard, but then I think of Chandler. He focuses on what he has rather than what he has lost-- he is incredibly thankful for his strong mother and grandparents who raised him. This is how Chandler maintains his positivity. He has taught me to focus on the 20 amazing years that I had with my father, rather than the years that I am missing out on with him.
(Interviewed and written by Tessa Hull)