Father’s Day is a funny day for me. Growing up without a dad (mine was your standard-issue drunken, absent, white trash loser), I barely paid attention to the holiday. It was so irrelevant to me that I remember showing up for church one Sunday as a teen and being totally caught off guard by the “dads rule” sermon. I bailed out in tears.
It was during those tumultuous teen years that I finally came to grips with not having a dad, or rather, having a chickenshit deadbeat as a chromosomal contributor. I raged, cried and once grabbed for a gun in my desire to get back at him. It finally took my youth minister’s wife bluntly reminding me that “you’re only hurting yourself, not him,” to snap me out of it. Since then, I’ve been at peace with my past and even more grateful for the miracle that my mom held things together on her own all those years.
So, Father’s Day no longer bothers me, but I still haven’t managed to incorporate an appreciation for it. My mom’s husband has been a good stepfather to my younger brother and the adopted father of my little sister for 12 years, yet I forgot to even send him a card this year. Ditto for my brother, who has my two-year-old nephew, whom I adore. Not being a dad myself, it still just doesn’t register.
At any rate, big ups to all you dads who are present, involved, and loving with your kids. It will mean a lot to them down the road.