Posted in Family, tagged Family, Fathers, Fathers' Day on June 17, 2012 |
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Today is Father’s Day, and fathers across America will be showered with cards and ties and cologne and coffee cups with “#1 Dad” on them.
It’s nice to get stuff that proclaims that you’re “#1,” of course, but most Dads I know would gladly settle for just getting a passing grade in the cosmic fathering curriculum. I can’t claim to speak for every father in America, of course, but I suspect most Dads would probably admit, deep down, that they aren’t very confident that they know exactly what they are doing. We know that there are good Dads, and bad Dads, and lots of Dads in between, just trying to do their best at an important role where there’s no training manual or meaningful checklist. We’ve observed our own fathers, and their fathers, and seen other fathers, and we’ve tried to borrow what seems to work and avoid what doesn’t — but still we wonder.
So the coffee cups and ties are nice, but I think the best Father’s Day gift is delivered when you realize, as I have, that your kids are good people, decent and resilient, fending for themselves and making their way in the world.
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I’m a Dad, and today is Fathers’ Day. It doesn’t feel any different from a normal day — except that when Kish and I went to have breakfast this morning in Willsboro, New York, the waitress called me “honey” and told me that my meal was half price in honor of Fathers’ Day. I had pancakes in grateful celebration.
I don’t want or need anything material for Fathers’ Day. No cologne or ties or “No. 1 Dad” coffee cup, thank you very much. Yesterday we got to see Russell at his new place in Brooklyn, and I have been happily reading Richard’s posts about his travels in Europe. What more do I need?
I can’t speak for all Dads, of course, but this Dad just wants the children who have made him a Dad in the first place to be safe, secure, happy, and making their way in the world. This Dad wants them to be proud of themselves, to be good citizens and good people, and to be capable, interested, active participants in their communities and the world at large. When I see signs of those things with our boys, it is the best Fathers’ Day present I could possibly get.
Happy Fathers’ Day to every other proud Dad in the Dad-i-verse.
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