Updated: Jun 20
Can you believe it is already Father's Day weekend in the United States? This holiday has traditionally been celebrated on the third Sunday in June and I can't believe we are
already more than halfway through the month!
Like it always seems to happen when you hit adulthood, it's just another summer that is flying by!
On the topic of Father's Day, I wanted to reflect on how influential a father really can be in his children's lives. I was blessed to be born to the greatest father a girl could ever ask for.
Growing up, my dad worked hard to support his family, but we knew we could always count on him to just be there. As a child, I never noticed the sacrifices he made to attend practically every school program, every sporting event, birthdays, holidays, etc. But I think that's what made my childhood so great--we never really heard about the sacrifices my parents made. They didn't go around complaining about what they didn't have or what they couldn't do or what they HAD to do. They just did it. I look back fondly on my childhood and it was the foundation they created together that led to all the memories and times I cherished with my family.
My dad is the kind of guy who is a jack of all trades. From needing Algebra or Chemistry help in high school, to construction work, to remodeling an entire kitchen, a middle of the night plumber when we had a leak, to rewiring our old home to make it up to code for new appliances and central air. He has been there to answer the call to everything any of us have ever needed.
But one question I have always asked myself is why? Why was he so willing to give so much of himself all the time? He certainly didn't grow up seeing it from his own father. My grandmother raised 8 children on her own after leaving a tumultuous relationship. So where did the desire to care so much for his own children and wife come from?
I like to think it was the time he served in the military. That the training he received in responsibility, courage, leadership, preparedness, etc. led him to be a great spouse and father. And over the years, I do think that helped tremendously. However, I think it is ultimately a choice. A choice we all have the opportunity to make.
This ties in with my intentional living mantra because great parenting doesn't just happen. You have to put in the work. Be willing to be in the trenches so to speak, every single day. Some days are harder than others, but the reward of the life journey you are on is so much more of a blessing than any hard day you have experienced.
So those great father's out there---are their kids lucky they got them? No, I don't think so. I think those are the fathers who are really the unsung heroes because they are making a conscious effort day in and day out to create those lasting memories for their children from the small daily tasks, to the big family vacations. It all adds up and it all matters.
This transcends generations also because good parenting is NOT genetic. Just because your dad or grandfather, uncles, etc. were not the best at this parenting job thing, doesn't mean you will be the same. Thankfully it's a choice. It's a choice we all have to live each day how we choose. Great fathers intentionally create a memorable childhood that their kids can look back fondly on.
Were you blessed to have that kind of father in your life? If so, TELL HIM! Sing praises to him and let him know that his efforts didn't go unnoticed.
Were you not so blessed to have that kind of father? Then be the change. Intentionally set out each day knowing you will put in the effort no matter how tough or challenging to make a great life for your kids and family.
Anyone can be a great father who shows up, is emotionally available, and is willing to teach his children all that he knows.
Happy Father's Day!