Dads of daughters are given an opportunity for a particular experience…
It’s June, the month of graduations, weddings, the end of the school year, and time to celebrate fathers. While this year I am not brushed by any graduations, I do have friends and family who teach or otherwise work in schools, and I’m happy for them! More personally though, this is the 33rd year since my wedding day, and this year the date falls on the same day as it did back then – a Saturday. And, same as it was back then, the next day is Fathers Day.
I felt really bad when I realized that my Daddy had to “give me away” the day before HIS day, and that I wouldn’t be around to celebrate it with him. I was his little girl, one of the most important people in his world. Dads of daughters are given an opportunity for a particular experience – a new depth of feeling, and a bond like no other. Don’t get me wrong – men have wonderful experiences as fathers of boys, they get to relate to their sons’ ways of thinking and feelings, and relive their own childhoods in a way.
But a man’s daughter gives him the opportunity to see the world in a way he never has before. A walk around the block might be more about the flowers or the clouds than the worms, and if she is interested in bugs, there is probably no urge to smash them. He develops the passion to move mountains for her, and he will protect her in ways no other man will, at least while she is young and his alone.
As the first man his daughter loves, she gives him a higher position than he could ever hold without her. Through the years, she softens his edges, and she learns that a certain look cast in his direction, or a particular phrase uttered at just the right moment, will turn him into a very pliable medium that no one else in the world has permission to use.
Father’s Day was always special to me. It was a day to express to my dad how important he was to me and how well I knew him. Especially in the later years, I enjoyed searching for just the right item or thinking of ways to show him how important he was. One year I attempted to recreate dishes that his mom always said was were his favorites. A few times I found “the perfect” shirt for him. Near what would be his last Father’s Day, I bought him a number of lightweight-but-warm sweaters, because he was always cold. Even with those sweaters, I made sure they were the right look and colors.
Dad graduated to Heaven over seven years ago, and many of those years have been occupied by my physical problems. This year, though, as the Father’s Day commercials hit the waves, I realized that I missed shopping for him – the opportunity to recognize him and celebrate our relationship – my special place in his heart, and his in mine. I count it a blessing to feel that way. I miss you, Daddy.
Happy Father’s Day