Day 74: Father’s Day

19 Jun

Today is Father’s Day and I wanted to give my Dad a pie. However, my Dad lives in Florida and I live in Oregon and so the chances of delivering him a fresh fruit pie were not great. But then, as I was looking through a cookbook, I saw a picture of a Brownie Pie and thought “That’s it!” I don’t think that there are many pies that could handle a 3,000+ mile journey – and I really won’t know how this pie has fared until my Dad gets the Priority Mail Box tomorrow. I’m hoping that it will be okay.

Father’s Day is the day that we celebrate our Dad’s. And to be sure, not everyone has a Dad that they want to celebrate. Being a Dad has to be harder than being a Mom because I think the Mom “thing” is hardwired into us as we grow the child inside us and it is hard not to connect with that baby. Without that biological connection, I think fatherhood is difficult … though I have seen some unlikely men become exceptional Dad’s.

My Dad was born in the midst of the Great Depression as many of our parents (or grandparents) were. It seems that my Dad’s parent’s did not come into their marriage with a lot of love and support and so they found it hard to give these same gifts to their children. That meant that my Dad had no one to depend on but himself when he was growing up.

At the age of 21, my Dad became a Dad when I was born. If you could see the photo of him holding me, you’d think he was my big brother. Less than two years later, he and my Mom buried my sister at the age of seven weeks after a bout of pneumonia. At that time there was no one to help them through the loss of a child… no counselors or therapists. My parents were expected to “not talk about it” and get on with their life. I can’t even imagine how that must have been for them.

Yet somehow my Dad (and Mom) kept on. He took a job with the city of New York and found a way to provide for us. Eventually we moved into a beautiful home in a quiet neighborhood – and he did it all without the help of anyone. He never asked for or received any handouts and he did all that he could to keep our family fed and clothed and safe. I don’t think I ever told him how grateful I am for that.

On this Father’s Day I wanted to send my Dad a gift that he would actually use, but as usual he could not tell me anything that he wanted. I imagine that it is hard for him to ask for something because he probably learned not to “want” much when he was youngster (because he probably wouldn’t get it). So, today, I want to honor my Dad for taking care of us as best he could. Somehow we all grew up to be pretty nice people and I think he should get some credit. Thank you Dad for being there. I know your life was not easy and, while I can’t change that, I want you to know I appreciate all that you have given to me. Happy Father’s Day – I love you.

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2 Responses to “Day 74: Father’s Day”

  1. Wendy June 20, 2011 at 7:13 PM #

    What a wonderful tribute to your Dad and also to all Dads who have done their best with the circumstances they have found themselves in. My Dad’s journey in life was a lot like your Dad’s — once he became a father. Beforehand he had the blessing of a loving home, but with the strictures of society and what a man did and didn’t do, he was somewhat at a loss with his daughter. No matter, it didn’t hurt to be raised with skills that most boys were raised with and I love him and am glad that he is still with us.

    As always, thanks for sharing.

  2. Alexandra June 22, 2011 at 11:36 AM #

    This is so beautiful and well written. Thank YOU for all that you have given to me!

    Love, Al

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