Making Peace with Father's Day
Submitted by NicoleTN
I grew up in the seventies, which happened to be an era ripe with deadbeat dads. Of course that phrase hadn't even been coined yet, but as kids, my siblings and I knew what our father was: GONE. To be fair, at that time the role of father wasn't viewed as being as important as the role of mother, so many dads excused themselves from parenting— and from child support. Not surprisingly, we never celebrated Father's Day at my house!
I remember my mother taking my father to court for back child support. He didn't even bother to show up half the time and he still got away with not paying! My dad's male lawyer and the male judge thought my dad was a fun guy who deserved to be off having a great time while my mother and we three kids kept the Campbell Soup company in business.
When I became a mom myself, I realized that I had no idea how to make my husband's first Father's Day special. I'd never celebrated Father's Day, ever. I knew that I could buy him a card and a nice dinner, but I was having trouble figuring out how to put the spirit of Father's Day into my own heart.
Then this morning, it came to me. As I was drinking my coffee and singing along to the "Sesame Street" theme, I saw my daughter look up at my husband. The look she had on her face was astounding, and he gazed back at her with the same expression. It was one of deep love and dedication.
They exchange this look a hundred times a day. It conveys a connection that runs so deep that I know this man will be at every recital, every school play and every sporting event she ever has. This is the notion of fatherhood that I will try to embrace on that Sunday in June. After all these years of ignoring Father's Day, I finally realize the significance of this special day.