While you sidle up to the BBQ and gather to honor him—Your Dad. Your Pops. Daddy.
Others of us may be counting the hours until the celebratory Facebook posts dwindle, the Hallmark commercials cease and get back to ‘avoiding.’
Though we don’t begrudge you your memory-making. It’s simply that ours are now rendered incomplete. Whether by physical separation which prevents some of us from spending time with ‘Dear Old Dad’, or estrangement –or in my case: the abrupt ripping of my father remaining chapters from his storybook by pancreatic cancer this past January at age 62.
It a bit baffling to me that a ‘Hallmark holiday’—should be one we will now spend so much time thinking of him. (For all of the ‘good’ about my dad…being a lover of ‘holidays’ was not one of them. 🙂 –Quite the contrary. He often appeared ‘bothered’ by them and instead of relishing in the joy of what he had. They seemed only to remind him of loss. (his sisters, mother and father.) and the stress of the money we didn’t have to spend.
Though we casually celebrated this day (well, mostly my sisters as I am not in the same state. I would send Omaha Steaks. Which, he loved.) …I am not certain it was held as ‘relevance’ or with the same ‘weightiness’ it is for us now.
When an ending happens prematurely–especially one as ‘complicated’ as fathers life. (My father was a strong proud man who sometimes struggled–like many human to be “happy.” He struggled with addiction. With a bit of a hot temper. With finances. With knowing how to best love his family. –Make no mistake—he did. But the other things—well, they sometimes got in his way. ) it makes a holiday dedicated to all things ‘classically father’ being played out in front of our eyes a bit—well…something. I’ve yet to be able to fully wrap my head around. It.
Nostalgic? Dismissive? Or maybe just a bit …
Its ‘funny’ as this holiday approached and it somehow seemed ‘more important’ to me—that some of our parents biggest’ life lessons’ are taught inadvertently
Though my father taught me to ballsy and adventurous. To not take any shit I didn’t deserve. (And I surely inherited his smart mouth and love of a few choice cuss words J ) ….he also inadvertently taught me that I do not want to be consumed by the past. That life is for the living. And though it is sad my father is not here to get a chance to live these lessons on his own…I am.
So today—instead of begrudging you your cook-outs (BBQ’s here in the south…) your ‘World’s Best Dad’ t-shirts and instgram ‘I love my daddy’ photos. Instead of ignoring/downplaying or avoiding this ‘holiday.’ …I will celebrate!!
My husband and I will grill a few NY strips, drink a Great Lakes Brewery selection (my family is from Cleveland, Ohio) –icey cold! …and give appropriate holiday celebration to my dad…whether he likes it or not;-)
(Your Favorite Daughter)