Another Father’s Day is fast approaching, and all those ads and displays about what to get dad are hard to miss. I wish I could tune them all out, but that’s pretty much impossible.
This is Father’s Day number three without my dad. Not that the day matters much. I miss my dad every day. But I think I miss him most in spring.
Who am I kidding?
I miss him most during whatever season it happens to be.
The above just might be one of the truest statements ever made about grief.
Sometimes we think mentioning someone’s dear one who has died might make the grieving person too sad or too upset.
So, we choose not to talk about their dear one. Big mistake.
If there’s one thing I know to be true about grief (and other tough topics) it’s that not talking about it does not equal not thinking about it.
Talking about a dear one who is missed is usually welcomed and appreciated by the person grieving. And it’s healing. Hearing your dear one’s name being spoken can feel like soothing salve on an open wound.
Don’t hesitate to give someone this gift.
That’s what listening to someone talk about their dear one who has died is – a gift.
Today, I’m sharing a little snippet about my dad from my memoir, Cancer Was Not a Gift & It Didn’t Make Me a Better Person.
You reading this post is you giving me that gift. So, thank you.
After you read it, I would love for you to tell me something about your dad, too, if you want to.
Daughter Number Three
When I was a young girl, I asked my dad once if he was disappointed that cold February day when I was born to get the news he was once again the father of a baby girl.
He laughed, shook his Elvis-like head of thick, black hair and, of course, said no. Still, I wondered how he could not have been a little disappointed for at least an instant back then. He must’ve wished for a son at least once or twice while waiting for me to arrive. But there he was, a young father on a teacher’s salary with three daughters ages four and under.
My dad was a hands-on dad before it was cool. I don’t know how many diapers he changed, but he did “baby sit” my siblings and me all the time, did much of the cooking, was generally the one who took us to doctor appointments, was grocery shopper in-chief and drove us wherever we needed to go.
When I was in high school, I had my dad for a history teacher. It was a small-town school, so there was no one else. At school he was a well-liked teacher. Kids liked him for his quirky mannerisms like looking at the clock every few seconds during lectures and for his sense of humor, but mostly they knew he was fair and genuinely cared about them.
Having your father as your teacher could have been quite an awkward experience for a teenager, but luckily, none of my friends thought much about it or gave me a hard time when I earned my A’s from him.
It felt good to have a father who knew so much about history, told corny jokes, stopped to talk to anyone he met in the grocery store, loved football and ran the scoreboard on Friday nights.
I was proud to be his daughter, even if I was number three.
I am still proud today.
Miss you, Dad. Love you forever.
Happy Father’s Day to all men who love and nurture the children (including adult ones) in their lives.
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Share something about your dad (or other father figure), if you want to. And yes, I want to hear from you if your relationship was/is poor too.
Are you missing a dear one this Father’s Day?
P.S. We discovered the photo in the featured image above in my dad’s desk drawer after he died. He had kept it close by all those years. And fyi, I also have a younger brother.