To all the fathers out there, today’s your day! It is a day where your children cook you breakfast in bed, for a change. It is a day where your children reflect how wonderful and beautiful an influence you have been in their lives. It is a day when we all think about the sacrifices our fathers have made for us.
Yet, I know Father’s Day is not always a joyful time for some. For some, it is a time to try to forget, because daddy was abusive to you. It is a time to forget because daddy didn’t pay attention to you. It is a time to forget because daddy didn’t teach you how you should be treated by men. It is a time to forget because daddy abandoned you. It is a time to forget because daddy just let it all happen to you.
If this is you, I understand, at least a little bit. My father didn’t teach me the things fathers should teach their little girls. My father didn’t teach me what I should look for in boys. He didn’t teach me that I shouldn’t allow myself to be treated a certain way. When it came to relationships, I was on my own. More than that, he looked the other way.
Yet, I can’t blame him. What I know is he did the best he could with what he had. He didn’t know his primary job was to teach his children how to become responsible adults. He didn’t know he was supposed to teach me that men are supposed to honor me. He didn’t teach his son how to be a man.
I did the best I could to fend for myself. But emotionally, I became a basketcase.
Nevertheless, I love my father. He’s not perfect, but he’s my daddy. He’s always been my daddy, and he will always be my daddy. No matter what. And I sent him a card letting him know just that. That I appreciate all he did, and still does, for me. I can’t blame him for what happened to me emotionally – I myself made some bad choices. And while I don’t blame him, I forgive him.
I’m thankful for my husband, Manchild, who is the most thoughtful daddy I’ve ever seen (not that there aren’t others out there; I just know about this one quite well). He is intent on teaching our daughter right from wrong. He is intent on teaching our daughter how valuable she is. He is intent on teaching our daughter how men should treat her by how he treats her. In fact, her daddy is a wonderful model of what she will hopefully look for in a man as she grows up and matures.
Fathers are so incredibly important to the healthy development of their children. In my mind, they can make or break their emotional and spiritual growth. So to all the fathers out there, understand the role you play in your children’s lives. Listen to their cries – audible or not. Listen to their shouts of victory. Listen to their moments of defeat. Be there in their moments of fear. Reach out and establish boundaries for them. Be ever present in their lives. You have a power and influence mothers were not designed to have. Because…
Fathers are Wonderful People
Fathers are wonderful people
Too little understood,
And we do not sing their praises
As often as we should…
For, somehow, Father seems to be
The man who pays the bills,
While Mother binds up little hurts
And nurses all our ills…
And Father struggles daily
To live up to “HIS IMAGE”
As protector and provider
And “hero or the scrimmage”…
And perhaps that is the reason
We sometimes get the notion,
That Fathers are not subject
To the thing we call emotion,
But if you look inside Dad’s heart,
Where no one else can see
You’ll find he’s sentimental
And as “soft” as he can be…
But he’s so busy every day
In the grueling race of life,
He leaves the sentimental stuff
To his partner and his wife…
But Fathers are just WONDERFUL
In a million different ways,
And they merit loving compliments
And accolade of praise,
For the only reason Dad aspires
To fortune and success
Is to make the family proud of him
And to bring them happiness…
And like OUR HEAVENLY FATHER,
He’s a guardian and a guide,
Someone that we can count on
To be ALWAYS ON OUR SIDE.
Helen Steiner Rice