Sunday, June 20, 2010

For fathers

I'm not sure what those of you who are dads are doing today, but I hope that it is a good day. Funny that I don't remember much about how I honored my father. I know that I made cards for him, just as I did for my mother. I also gave him presents when I was older. Things like slippers, a tie, or a shirt. I just don't remember anything else that was special about those father's day activities.

I think that my father would relax on Father's Day.  Maybe he thought about his father, although he never talked about him.  He was a man who didn't speak of things in an emotional way.  

In spite of the painful times that I had around his drinking and his criticism, I loved him. He was a good provider and he taught me a love for the water and living things. He grew up on a farm and went to sea as a young man out of high school. He decided that the mariner's life wasn't for him though after he fell in love with my mother. My father liked poetry and had this soft compassionate inside that he didn't project on the outside. It was there though when he would cry over the loss of his sister who died an alcoholic or when an animal that he loved would die. He just didn't let that side of him out very often. Maybe it was his generation or maybe it was the fear that blocked him. I know now that it wasn't about me.

Regret has a way of sneaking up on you. The Big Book says that you won't regret the past nor wish to shut the door on it. And I know that I can't relive anything from the past now. But I have those moments when I wish that I could have told my father that I loved him more. All the gifts and cards don't really amount to much when it's the words that really convey the meaning.

So hopefully the father that you are or those in your life know love and will find joy in the day. It's never too late to tell your dad something special or to be something special for your child.

21 comments:

  1. I cannot change my relationship with my parents, they are gone. But I can go forward with the relationships in my life today. That is all I can do.

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  2. a special post...my father means so much to my life and being one all the more...

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  3. I guess the brutal truth is that not everyone considers their children to be 'real people' or those that they want to share their emotions, disease aside.

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  4. Some of us are only on loan. I miss my dad so much.

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  5. What a loving tribute. Interesting how patterns repeat. I can't help but noticed that he loved the sea. Thanks for sharing.

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  6. Fatherhood brings up lots of emotions, most uncomfortable.

    I'm with Mary, I can't change what happened in the past, but I can move forward.

    We are going to celebrate this afternoon, with children and with parents, and I get to grill!

    As I catch up and read of your retirement, Congratulations! You'll be busier than ever if what others say is true.

    Love your garden, your so far ahead of us that live way to the north of you.

    Take care.

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  7. This is a nice post with some memories of your father. Hope you enjoy your day and it is nice of you to visit your father-in-law to wish him a Happy Fathers Day.

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  8. the greatest gift I can give to my father....forgiveness....and I do. Have a great day

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  9. I just wanted to write to say your blog gives me some hope. Thank you. ~Kelly

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  10. Considering my age, I realized this quite early (OR late) in life. Sometimes emotional incidents open the gates to conveying your true feelings. When it happened, I remember preparing a greeting card for him (he was overseas) and I wrote to him - "It is easy to be a father. It is harder to be a dad. You're the best dad in the world". He still carries it with him.

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  11. Lovely memories of your dad. Father's really rock- they teach us so much. I am grateful mine is still alive, I pray he is still with us next year.

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  12. thank you for the lovely post. They say actions speak louder than words...those gifts and cards may have meant more than you know.
    Many blessings,
    Marie

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  13. Beautiful post. I am grateful for the father my children have, although our marriage did not last our relationship has because of his 25 years in AA, because he's always made himself available, because he's a wonderful father to our children. I honor him on Father's Day. And so I told him.

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  14. In the last years of his life here, my Father and me did come to an understanding and appreciation of each other.

    I think of him often. And today with more gratitude than judgment.

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  15. I miss my dad a lot, and he is still in the world, just so carefully guarded by my mother. She is the dry drunk; he is the enabler. Got to forgive them both. Some days are easier than others. My life gives me the challenge of doing my best to love my mom, when it is my dad that I really want to know better.

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  16. Thanks for the post today. I miss my father today although for years my feelings toward him were filled with anger.He was a violent drunk.
    Due to the program more feelings emerge that were buried.
    He was an emotional person I remember his kindness of animals.

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  17. I was overwhelmed yesterday with the sense of loss of my father. I hadn't even been thinking about him even though it was father's day. And while he did a lot of things "wrong" and I can point to them as underlying causes and conditions...he did a lot of things right...I am coming to believe. While I felt very sad, it was a good sad..because I can recognize that I can love him anyway.

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  18. This is an important reminder, Syd.

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  19. we made it all about him yesterday, my Wes that is. the girls got us early and made him coffee and i carried it to him in bed. they jumped on the bed and screamed 'Happy Fathers Day!' then we made quiche and had breakfast and the girls doted on him all day. they cooked blueberries and made a peach and blueberry cobbler for him. it was a wonderful day and he took his new picture and frame to work to set on his desk to show off his little ones.

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  20. I don't know if this will help or not Syd, but I have always believed that when someone dies, their eyes are completely open to everything and they see all of life very clearly. So, I believe your dad knows that you love him.

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  21. Syd,
    You have such a gentle way with thoughts. I don't think that at times it's possible to never have regrets, I think it's just a normal part of the human makeup but as long as we don't let those regrets rule our lives we'll be OK, thanks for sharing those special glimpses of your father's sensitive side, we are all complex....

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