Fathers don’t always enjoy the glow of intimacy and admiration we give our mothers. Indeed, fathers have the cultural image of bread winner, disciplinarian, authority figure. When you were growing up, how often did you hear your mother say, “just wait until your father gets home!” I would think to myself; “Now why would I do that“? Then laugh to myself.
Traditionally, our culture has often put fathers into a very difficult role. They must be aloof but intimate; must earn the wage, but be present; must be compassionate, but disciplinarian. They don’t get near as much attention as Mothers Day. I don’t feel that’s very fair. Dad‘s play a very important roles in our lives.
Society teaches a stigma that men should not cry or break. Unfortunately, many still believe that today. Men are just as sensitive as women at times, they just hide it well or they’re taught to.
The men in my life have had a profound impact on my upbringing, they may not even be aware they have been. My Father has been a constant reflection of keeping myself in line since I was a teenager. He has been a reminder of what hard work and ethics are.
When I was growing up in New Jersey and lived with my parents and grandparents, my grandfather was the one I was closest to. Being the oldest grandchild and a girl, he did favor me. Of course I had no knowledge of this.
Looking back, I do see it clearly. Being a child in that English Colonial house in Glen Rock was magical for me. My father worked what seemed to be every day. My Uncles and father worked in sanitation for my grandfather who owned the business. They worked over night in NYC. It didn’t matter what the weather was, they still picked up their stops.
I only really had time with my father when we took vacations. We went to upstate NY, the Catskills. We went to Aruba and Curacao. We went to Disney in florida. I loved my time with my parents but especially that my father was with me. I’ve never told how I look forward to him being with us. Maybe my mother will tell him, after all she reads my blogs. LOL. (Thanks, Mom.)
My father molded my ethics. He taught me what was needed to be a strong, independent person. He taught me about “Family”. Family is important, it shapes you. None of the men in my life knowingly set this example. I was close to my uncles. Closest to my youngest Uncle. Cookie. (He lived with us too.) My former father n law, whom I’m still close with, showed us all the same values.
When the people I loved fell ill and I was put in a predicament to be the sole supporter, 24 hour caregiver, as well and raise two teenagers, that moral compass kicked in. Let me assure you those were very taxing times. Those were the years that either made you or broke you. That was the decade that defined me.
The decade that brought me to today. The decade many people will never know about and the few that do, didn’t understand. (Why I chuckle when people judge)
My Grandfather was soft with me. He was my best friend. We talked about so much and he was my favorite person in the world. I trusted him with my life and all my secrets. I speak of him almost daily. To have had him in my life was more then a blessing.
His passing devistated me. It was unexpected. My world came crashing down. You have no choice but to live with it. I carry him and much of what he said and taught me, with me always.
These men in my life were irreplaceable. They've taught me well. Fathers, grandfathers, uncles, husbands and any man that steps in the role as father, deserve the love and respect we give our mothers. They are incredible people who are also part of our soul family.
Here’s to the dads! Here’s to the men who go without to make a better life for their children! Here’s to the step dads, pet dads. Here‘s to my dad and the men in my life here and in spirit.
Happy Father‘s Day!