Every year when Father’s Day rolls around, someone usually asks me if the holiday makes me sad.
My Dad’s been gone since I was sixteen and it’s touching when friends worry if I’m feeling left out.
But Dad’s special day doesn’t get me down. Especially since I’ve had my own children, there’s no shortage of fathers for me to celebrate.
Of course I honor the father my husband has become and cherish the incredible bond he shares with our children.
I celebrate my grandfather who stepped in as a father figure during my angsty teenage years which are turbulent enough without throwing in a major life change. I’m beyond blessed that my children have the privilege of knowing and loving their great grandfather.
I thank my father-in-law who has made me feel like family from the beginning and raised my husband to be the loyal, hard-working, and kind-hearted man he is today.
I applaud my stepfather who has been a rock for my mother. He gives everything to my kids and they’re over the moon to build, assemble, and watch trains chug along with their “Papa”.
So the Hallmark holiday with its frantic card displays and streaming images of golf, ties, and beer isn’t an emotional pitfall.
But it’s the every day moments that remind you of the ones you’ve lost and what might have been.
Like when I recognize my Dad’s eyes in my son’s.
And when my boys start pee wee soccer and I know he’d be there at the sidelines for every game.
How excited he’d be to finally have two boys to play with after raising a daughter…and may I add, he grew up with five sisters!
Or hearing about another tragic event in the world; wishing he was here to tell me everything will be okay.
Of course, the BIG life events matter, too. Gettting married, buying a house, announcing pregnancies.
Going back to school and completing my English Degree like he did. Knowing how proud he’d be that even though life is busier than ever before, I am writing again!
But unlike so many others whose fathers are absent from their lives, I’m one of the lucky ones.
Though his time here was too short, his example is the standard I hold for an exceptional husband and Dad.
So don’t feel sorry for me on Father’s Day. Instead, remember to celebrate the little moments with the ones who are still here, in big ways every day.