My dad and I didn’t have the best relationship when I was a teen and young adult. We were both stubborn. I was an ungrateful daughter who wanted a “cool” dad. Boy, was I foolish. When I started to take my faith seriously, about ten years ago, I finally understood that the commandment “honor thy mother and father” was directed toward me, not someone else. I made a conscious effort to improve my relationship with my dad. I had to love him in spite of his flaws.
I don’t want to give you the impression that our relationship was horrible or abusive in anyway. It was probably like many relationships, a mix of good and bad. There was plenty of room for improvement.
As my dad’s cognitive decline continued it made my goal more difficult to attain but also more imperative that I do whatever I could. His hearing loss and aphasia made having a conversation difficult. I made a point of saying “I love you” to him every time we talked and whenever I saw him. I had to make up for all the times I didn’t love him as I ought.
I’m glad I did what I did but I could have, should have, done more. I didn’t thank him often enough for teaching me valuable skills such as how to change a bicycle tire, adjust the handlebars and seat height; or hold a hammer, how to operate a saber saw and numerous other practical tasks. I didn’t thank him for raising me in the Catholic faith.
I think he knows how grateful I am for everything he taught me. I love him for all those reasons and more. I love him because he had a childlike curiosity (though I often saw it as nosiness). Most of all I love my dad because he married my mom (who is a superwoman) and they gave me life.
Happy Father’s Day Dad! I love you!
Requiscat in pace.
I’d like to thank all the father’s in the world for fulfilling this important God-given role. I offer heartfelt prayers for all the biological fathers, adoptive fathers, foster fathers, step fathers, grandfathers, great-grandfathers, and spiritual fathers; for fathers who have lost a child and for those who are expecting their first child. And for all the fathers that have passed before us, requiscant in pace.