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Old 06-15-2019, 01:40 PM   #1
The_Doc_Man
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USA Holiday - Father's Day

To all of you out there who are fathers, grandfathers, or even higher generations, I salute you. Sunday, June 16, 2019 is the USA Holiday celebrating fathers. (3rd Sunday in June.)

It takes a certain amount of courage, patience, and love to bring a child into the world (and let's not discount Mother's Day, which was last month but I didn't happen to post that one, because you DO need to have a mother involved to make that baby...)

I never knew my grandfathers. Both died before I was born, and my father suffered difficulties from not having a stable, adult male in his life because his father died young in a construction accident. My dad stayed with me even though there were rocky moments in my parents' marriage.

I married so late in life that I have no blood heirs - but I became a stepfather and found out soon enough what parenting was like because within a year of marriage, I became a grandfather. Watching little ones grow into big folks is a huge trip, and you just hope you didn't make too many mistakes along the way. So far, based on my two local grandsons, I think I did OK, though only time will tell.

I also give credit to my stepson for raising two boys with love, discipline, and a sense of right & wrong, even in the midst of a nasty divorce. He managed to assure the boys that they were loved and that they would not be abandoned despite some difficult times. They seem to have gotten the message because they are good kids.

Dads out there... you've made many sacrifices, but the generation that follows you will hopefully know they were loved. Wherever you are, even if not in the USA, Happy Father's Day.

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Old 06-15-2019, 02:34 PM   #2
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

Thank you for that wonderful message.
As the father of 4 boys and grandfather to 6, I see Fathers Day as the one day set aside to honor those who tried their best, regardless of how poor of a job they did. While mine seem to think the world of me, and all are law-abiding citizens who love and take care of their own and don't seem to have a mean or prejudicial bone in their body, I never feel as though I did enough or deserve so much of their admiration. The most satisfaction seems to come from watching them carry on the traditions that my wife and I instituted when they were growing up.
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Old 06-15-2019, 03:47 PM   #3
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Doc_Man View Post
and you just hope you didn't make too many mistakes along the way.
God knows I wasn't like one of those great fathers in the movies for my two sons. And no matter how hard I tried and am trying to be, but am far from it. I made too many big mistakes that I'm not proud of them, too many wrong decisions. Spending 20 hours a day on two jobs (day & night) to be able to pay for their educational expenses was the whole thing I could do as a father.

Now sitting in the sofa watching them, 2 PHD graduated grown men discussing something that I can't even understand what they're talking about, I try to make myself believe I did the right thing. But God knows I wasn't there when they needed me.
I was sitting in my office and doing my job when they needed someone to talk to. And this pain is killing me.


Last edited by Tera; 06-15-2019 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 06-15-2019, 04:13 PM   #4
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

Tera,

Without knowing anymore than you have shared, I feel that because they are even talking to you means if they felt at any time you needed to be forgiven, they have already done so.

Maybe it is time you forgive yourself...?

Doc, as usual, great message...
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Old 06-15-2019, 04:27 PM   #5
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

@Tera - I know what you're talking about.

Don't mistake that for "I know what you're feeling" because no one can when they say that.

I think many of the best fathers feel inadequate in one way or another, which is what makes them so great. But I would bet that our kids do not look back on their life with our eyes, even if what we think or say is 100% accurate. They probably would have no idea of what you're on about or what you're putting yourself through. I hesitate to give you advice, but if you come clean with them about how you feel about the situation and how you feel about how you measure up in your own eyes, I think there can be only 2 outcomes. Either

- they will agree with you and remove any doubt about how they might look back on their life. In that case you won't have to wonder anymore and at the same time, gain a mutual understanding, acceptance and forgiveness, OR

- they will say "what the hell are you talking about?" and proceed to tell you how great you were (especially for the sacrifice you made) and how much of a positive effect it had on their life.

I think the best thing you can do is get it off your chest. The worst thing you can do is leave it to your last moments - assuming you would even have that chance.
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Old 06-15-2019, 08:27 PM   #6
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

Quote:
I think many of the best fathers feel inadequate in one way or another, which is what makes them so great.
I agree. It is exactly that attitude of uncertainty that makes you continue to strive for the good result. By never believing you've done quite enough, you don't stop. And there is where the difference comes in between a great dad and a not-so-great dad. It is that difference exemplified in the song "Cat's in the Cradle" by Harry Chapin.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUwjNBjqR-c

For some reason this song always gets to me.

Quote:
But I would bet that our kids do not look back on their life with our eyes
I am reminded of the poem by Robert Burns, "to a Louse," that includes a line that says,

"O wad some Pow'r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!"

(Oh, would some power, the gift to give us
to see ourselves as other see us.)

Sometimes, if you look closely enough, you see yourself through those other eyes. Like when you are watching TV and suddenly one of the grandsons comes up and snuggles next to you, reading a book but suddenly comfortable with his head on your lap.

One of my favorite movies is Wreck-It Ralph - an animated film about a game character who is always tired of being the villain in his game, so tries to be a hero by going into another game to win a medal. In the close of the movie, Ralph resolves his personal issues at his Bad-Anon chapter (attended by all of the game villains in the arcade.) To paraphrase his closing quote, "If (a) little kid likes me, I can't be all bad."
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Old 06-16-2019, 04:33 PM   #7
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

Cat's in the Cradle by Harry Chapin strikes terror in the hearts of fathers everywhere!

Happy Father's Day all.

Wayne

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Old 06-18-2019, 06:42 AM   #8
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Re: USA Holiday - Father's Day

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Originally Posted by Wayne View Post
Cat's in the Cradle by Harry Chapin strikes terror in the hearts of fathers everywhere!
Quite True. Had a very good Father's Day.

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