Friday, June 17, 2011

Father's Day: An Insignificant Nuisance?

Father’s Day is day after tomorrow. It has been a day of mixed blessings for me for a long time now. My own father has been deceased since 1978. That really is a long time… But I have been a father since 1989. And that too is a long time.  Mixed blessing is thus a descriptive phrase.
This year is going to be different. I have formulated a list of things that must or must not be done on this annual holiday. Here is the list:


No whining allowed… I must confess. I am a grown man and I have chosen to feel sorry for myself on Father’s Day of past years. I even resented other adult men who seemed to view the holiday as an insignificant nuisance. But I will not do that this year. Last November I assisted with a line of duty death involving one of my Texas Highway Patrol Troopers. He was assigned to Garza County, which is not too far from where I spent my formative years. Trooper McDonald left a dedicated wife and a precious young daughter behind. His little girl recently celebrated her first birthday. Whining will be replaced with empathy this year. I have a thin blue line wrist band that I wear in memory of Jonathan McDonald. When I am tempted to feel sorry myself this Sunday, I will simply look at my wrist band…Enough said.


Gratitude is in order… I have all three of my boy’s home this summer. Based on where they are in life that will most likely never happen again. Earlier this week Randall gave me a very unique book as a Father’s Day present. It instantly became one of my most treasured possessions. Most of all it has just been a pleasure to have all of them home for the summer.


Harry Chapin is banned… I heard Harry Chapin’s 1974 hit: Cats and the Cradle on the radio going to work earlier this week. That song is officially banned for old men like me. I can’t listen to it right now. boys are moving rapidly toward complete independence, and I find myself having visions of going down the toy aisle with them at Walmart in Lubbock years ago.


List Making might be a good idea… I hate lists. I lose the grocery list before I get to the store. (perhaps on purpose…don’t tell!) I will make a better list on Sunday. I think I will formulate a listing of every man who has served as a surrogate father to me since I lost my dad when I was 15. Now that is a good idea…


I hope everyone has a great Father’s Day. Don’t view it as a nuisance. That will be a mistake you will grow to regret. Think in terms of someone missing their dad this weekend, and be a blessing to them.

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