20160624 101149 300x169 POSITIVE PARENTING  A CELEBRATION OF FATHERS

June is an important month, for me. In this month the summer season begins. During this year, April and May were unseasonably cold. There were some nights when the temperature went into the 40’s. That was supposed to be the time of year when the winter coats and hats and gloves get put into the closet. This year I didn’t put anything away until June 1. I’m still holding on to my knit hat, just in case.

My other reason for liking June is that this is the month we celebrate Father’s Day. It is my opinion that dads, overall, get a raw deal. When you compare this day to Mother’s Day there is so much less hoopla. On Mother’s Day whole sections in stores are dedicated to “Mother’s Day” cards.
Father’s Day on the other hand gets a fraction of the attention. Don’t get me wrong. Mothers are a very important part in every family. I love my mother very much. There is one important fact. There would be no mothers if there weren’t any fathers. I’m talking biological. You can’t have one without the other.
I understand that there are a large number of single parent households in which there is only the mother. I hear many ladies say they were the mom and the dad. I take my hat off to you but Mother’s Day is for women. Father’s Day is for the men.
As I travel through this city ( New York City), I see more and more evidence that dads do take care of their kids. I see them on the subways and the buses taking their kids to and from school. Anyone can see that these relationships are close. All I have to do is watch the body language. That way that dad looks at his kids to make sure they are OK. The way the kids look back to get that reassurance that they are not alone. The father/child bond is equally as important as the mother/bond.
I see it when I go to family court. There are dads all over the waiting area, there to make sure that their child support payments are properly paid. I would even guess that some of those dads are there to collect child support.
I really see how important dads are when I go to the doctor with my dad. I watch closely as these adult kids guide their dads with their walkers, wheel chairs and canes. They make sure these older parents are walking in the right direction and sitting comfortably. When dad’s name is called, it is these adult kids that let their parents know when their names are called.
I go in with my dad so I can answer questions or to translate, when my dad doesn’t understand. We all do this and I’m not bringing all this up to demonstrate how great we kids are. I bring this up to demonstrate that these dads, including mine, must be pretty special.
I remember all those time when my dad sat with me at the doctor’s office and many of those times I was an adult. Like the time when I went to the oral surgeon or the time when I had the colonoscopy or the time he came to help me celebrate my first sober anniversary. I show up for him because he showed for me. He taught me being a dad is a lot more than just producing a child. He taught me that being there and showing up are what defines fatherhood.
On the 28th, my dad turned 92. He doesn’t like a lot of fanfare. There wasn’t a big party. He’s in a nursing home now. In fact he and my mom are in the same nursing home. I visit them both once a week on Sunday’s. I saw him the Sunday before and I called him on “his” day. He didn’t make a big fuss about my call but I’m sure he appreciated it none the less.
At 92, my dad is in remarkably good health. That was the other lesson he passed on to me. He felt it was always important to take care of yourself. Since he was diabetic, he was always at some doctor to find out what he needed to do to improve his quality of life. There were many times that I would accompany him to those doctors. I would make appointments for those same times that he would be there. I’ve been watching him and I want a high quality of life and as a result my health is good.
I want to take a moment to say it wasn’t his declining health that led him to the nursing home. A few years earlier my mom had a stroke, developed dementia and needed 24 hour care. I was born a year after they were married. I’ll be 64 in November which means they will have been married 65 years.
Bad health didn’t send him to the nursing home, it was a broken heart. He spends his time being with her. Before I was able to see the real picture, I fought hard with him because I felt he had so much more life in him. When I took a step back and really opened my eyes, I had no choice but to grant him his wishes.
Watching my dad has helped me really appreciate the meaning of Father’s Day. I think I will start a movement that will force those who sell greeting cards to increase the sizes of those sections the next time this holiday arrives. I hope that many of you will move with me.
In the meantime, I will continue my Sunday visits and be with him for his next doctor’s visit in two weeks.

I’m the guy whose glass is always 1/2 full.

I LOVE BEING A DAD!!

One comment on “POSITIVE PARENTING- A CELEBRATION OF FATHERS

  • Beautiful post!!! How fortunate that you had a dad that was involved in your life. I can feel the love between you two from your post. Thank you for sharing your positive dad experience. Much love to all the dads out there that are intricately involved in their children’s lives!

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