The births of my two children were unforgettable peak experiences in my life. I knew at the moment they entered the world that they would BE my world. If you are a father, you know that it is one of the hardest and most rewarding things you will ever do. I worked hard to be a good provider, and spent as much time as possible with them when I got home from work, on the weekends and on vacations.
The goal is to raise self-sufficient adults and if you’re fortunate, that’s just what you get. The downside is that Father Time eventually starts limiting your “father time.” They grow up and go off to college and you get only sporadic moments to be a dad after that. I cherish every one of these moments with my remarkable kids, and I’m proud that they don’t really need me that much.
I have learned that even when you think they are not listening to your advice, they really are. If you live life as a good role model, you’re increasing the chances they will too. And the most important thing you can do is love them and make time for them when they do need you.
As I celebrate Father’s Day this coming weekend, I want to thank my father, Jim Goad (pictured above), for doing these things for me. He has never stopped being a dad. He still tells me he is proud of me, and defends me when he thinks I’m getting a raw deal. He demonstrates compassion, loyalty and a sense of humor. He’s a good guy… with generosity worth passing on to the next generation.
We live pretty far apart now (California and Indiana) and I wish I had more father time with my dad. We have email, phone calls and fishing trips. But you know… he really is here all the time. He’s a part of me. Sometimes I catch myself involuntarily saying things to my kids that I originally heard from my dad. And I smile.
Celebrate the best qualities in your father this Father’s Day. Trust me… he will appreciate it.
I learn more from Pop now than ever. Now older, I finally appreciate his wisdom and experience. He’s my hero. Thanks for sharing.
So true, David. They really do become a part of us, and even though distance separates us, hardly a day passes that we don’t think of their advice or quote their wisdom. I’m flying to Ohio tomorrow to spend the weekend with my 93-year-old Dad. He walks with a cane now and his hearing is almost gone, but his mind is sharp and we still connect on many levels. Happy Father’s Day!
That’s awesome Larry!
David, I lost my dad 3 weeks ago. He was almost 94. This will the first Father’s Day in which I won’t be able to visit or call him (at least not in an earthly manner). Your post today is very meaningful (and timely) for me. I too, often catch myself saying things, and giving advice to my kids in almost the exact same words my father used when saying those things to me.
I am blessed with 3 wonderful boys, and although we constantly do things together as a family, I still designate a day every few months to have an all-day “Father-Son-Day” with one of my boys individually…just like my dad with me. Hopefully, they will do the same with their kids someday.
Happy Father day to you, and all the dads out there!
May the circle be unbroken! I’ve met your boys and seen you in action as a father, and I can tell the good is being passed on to the next generaiton 🙂
Sorry for your loss,
My dad didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it…