father’s day. the one sunday of the year when we make sure to dote on the one who acted as our supporter when we were growing up. a day to cook out and show dad just how thankful you are to have him there to draw your comic book characters for you because you can’t draw but you know exactly how they are supposed to look. a day to remember how lucky you are to have that man in your life to show you right from wrong and be there when you make mistakes.

it sounds like a picture perfect day to celebrate, right?

for so many of us though, father’s day comes each year only to leave a bitter taste in our mouths. for whatever reason our fathers have been unable to play the role of protector, teacher, and friend and it has left us feeling hurt when we start seeing all those “world’s best dad” mugs show up in every store. our fathers have walked out, been taken from us, or were never ready to take on that role. and as much as we want to be angry with them for not being what we wanted them to be we can’t help but hold out some sort of hope that one day they might change.

i know, because i’ve been holding out for that moment for several years now. i was one of the lucky ones. my brothers and i got to have our father with us for most of our early lives. he was the strong, caring, and always willing to play baseball in the backyard. the problem came when he suddenly decided that this life with a wife and four kids wasn’t for him anymore. i still don’t know why he doesn’t try to contact me. i will probably never find out why he couldn’t see that i was just a hurt 16 year old when he left. i’m 20 now and just as confused as i was when he first left. the difference is that now i know that not everyone is cut out to be a dad.

i was lucky enough to have an amazing mom who stepped up to the plate during that dark time and made sure that all of us kids were taken care of. she showed us what a real parent is and showed us just how much she loves us. in short, she was amazing in spite of having the ground pulled out from her life when my dad left as well. since then there have been several people in our lives who stepped up to the plate to show us that it wasn’t our fault that our dad decided to leave. even when we start to believe that it was something he did that made him leave us and not something we did, it still hurts to know that he lives so close but isn’t involved anymore. today is a day to celebrate the single moms out there who protect their kids at all cost and make sure they know they are always loved.

father’s day is a day of celebration and a day of remembering. it’s important to learn that fathers are human too. fathers hurt and dream and make mistakes. this fathers day i am working on forgiving my father. i’m working on forgiving the fact that he is choosing to not be a part of these important years of my life.

maybe your father hurt your. maybe he left you behind or made you forget who you really are.

today i hope you can find peace in spite of whatever pain is connected to your father. i hope those of you who have your father in your life are reminding him how important he is to you. i hope those without a father active in your life remember that you are no less of a person because of it.

even on the difficult days like this, remember that there will always be someone in your corner. you are never going to be walking through this life on your own, even when the people like your father turn out to not be who you thought they were.

you are here for a reason. be grateful for the men in your life who has positively influenced your life. be grateful for the lessons you have learned from the ones who made mistakes. be aware of those who love you with no limits, be it your father, your mother, or any of your supporters in your life.

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