Fathers, Fathers, Fathers

20 Jun

I’ve been blessed to have a lot of very loving ,strong men in my life.  I’m thinking of all of them (you) on this day.

My Dad

Father’s Day was only difficult for me for the first two years after he died.  The first was just a week or two after his death, the second was around the one-year anniversary of his death.  Father’s Day was never really a big deal to him.  Dad was a big, “That’s a Hallmark holiday!” kind of guy.  I agreed with him then, but as time has progressed, I’ve realized that it’s not true.  Sure, we should show our love for our parents every day, but perhaps Father’s (and Mother’s) serves as more of a reminder to children how important their parents are.  So, because we didn’t really celebrate Father’s Day, I don’t look at it with childlike nostalgia or even in the pain of his absence, but I do find myself wishing that I’d taken that day to love on him extra, for his sake and my own.

My Step-Father

Paul holds a position in my family that I never thought would exist – step-father.  Mom swore she’d never love again after dad died and we all thoroughly believed her!  Time healed and Paul entered our lives and is here to stay.  He loves his girls and his grandsons very much, it’s obvious.  And he loves my mother dearly, which makes him a keeper in my eyes.  I’m sure you’ve heard the quote, “The best gift a father can give his children is to love their mother.”  Well, it works in step-father land, too.  He entered our family when we all of us children were grown, and so no parenting duties have been necessary.  But to see Mom’s loneliness gone and to know that she is loved means the world to me.

All of our Priests

We’ve been blessed to have known and been under the spiritual care of many a wonderful Father. Fr. Jim in Indiana taught us about liturgy, parish life, and was there for us as we discerned Matthew’s call to ministry.  He’s a very strong, quiet leader who loves his flock, His God, and his family.  We learned many, many valuable things from him and on his watch, and I sometimes wonder where we would be if it weren’t for him.

Our current priest, also Fr. Jim, is also a very strong leader.  He patiently waited for us as we found our way into Orthodoxy, guided us when we asked, and stepped back to let us figure things out.  He believes in Matthew and loves our family.  We know we couldn’t be in a better place in this stage in our life.  We are forever grateful to both of our Fr. Jims!

There have been many other priests/pastors along the way.  Some ushered us into Orthodoxy, others sat and watched quietly, while others were loathe to see us go.  Many of them have blessed us their prayers, guidance, and genuine love. Some of them have children, some of them do not, but all of them are wonderful Fathers to us.

My Love

I can’t say enough good things about my husband’s parenting.  Sometimes he dresses Adeline funny, doesn’t brush her hair before they leave the house, or lets her eat things I never would (or at least not in quantities that I would!), but of all the complaints for a mother to have about her child’s father, these are the most benign.  Matthew has loved that girl from the moment he knew of her existence.  Not one of the distant father stereotypes are who he is as a papa.  Dirty diapers? He’ll change them.  Crying baby?  He’ll scoop her up.  Fit throwing? He’s got it taken care of.  He would do anything for Adeline. Matthew is what a father should be. 100%.  All the way.  What a lucky wife and mother I am to witness his parenting.  What a lucky girl Adeline is to be parented by him.


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Many other fathers have blessed my life – teachers, other family members, friends.  It’s impossible to name them all here, but if you’re one of them, I hope you know it.  I hope I’ve said it to you.  And I hope all of you amazing fathers out there have a wonderful, well-deserved Father’s Day.  If you’ve not been so amazing, as it is easy for us all to fail in, I pray you give it the old college try to do for your children all that you can in the best way you know how.  It matters. We watch, and we love you.

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One Response to “Fathers, Fathers, Fathers”

  1. pam and paul kimmel June 21, 2010 at 4:50 am #

    Thank you for thinking of me on fathers day,it made the day extra special.

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