Happy Father's Day, Dad

Filed under: Just For Dads

In most households it is the mother who gets the lion's share of the parenting glamor. The skinned knees, night time sick duty, monitoring sibling squabbles. Such was the case in my house as I was growing up. My father had his own business that required the bulk of his time, so it was my mother who tended to us on a daily basis. I can't recall much about him until I was in my early teens, but I always knew he was there: working, caring.

Once I was a teenager, out of my horrid years, and my older brother had moved out, my father and I had the opportunity to spend more time together. We went skiing in the winter, took long bike rides in the summers and I sometimes accompanied him on business trips. Never one to do things half-heartedly, our ski days began when the lifts opened, we took 20 minutes for lunch and ended when the lifts closed. Likewise, our bike rides, or death rides as I sometimes refer to them, were not for the faint of heart.

We now live about 5 miles from my parents; one of the most healing aspects of this arrangement is that I have been able to watch my father with my three kids. He still works long hours, but when he comes home and we happen to be visiting, he always makes time to spend with his grandchildren. He and my oldest son are currently immersed in the World Cup, sometimes exchanging phone calls about scores and players. During the Winter Olympics this year, the two of them spent many an hour watching and discussing the events. My daughter and my father enjoy occasional dates; they go swimming and out to lunch. During this time she talks his head off and they both come back exhausted and smiling. And watching my father with our toddler is one of the most heart touching visions I have ever witnessed. The joy that they  receive from each other is beyond words for me.

As I watch my children and my father it no longer matters whether or not he was able to be there during my early years, I would not have remembered it. But the gift of being able to watch it as an adult will forever stick with me. We haven't skied or ridden bikes together in a few years; pregnancy, knee pain and scheduling have gotten in the way. But I hope to get out for a couple of rides this summer and hit the slopes again in the winter.

Happy Father's Day, Dad. I love you.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.