Happy Father’s Day to Jim, my wonderful husband, and the best man I could ask for to be the dad of my wonderful, beautiful baby girl! I know that she must be so proud to have been your daughter when she looks down upon us.
Happy Father’s Day to David, the best dad I could ever have dreamed of, the man who taught me how to reach my goals, how to love, what a man should be like, how to change a tire, great work ethic, the value of a bad joke, and so much more. You are a wonderful, wonderful father, and I am so proud to be your daughter!
Happy Father’s Day to Bob, the man who makes my mom happier than I’ve seen her in my whole life.
Happy Father’s Day to Joe, the man who gave my husband his analytical mind, who makes him laugh, who encourages him to reach for his dreams and who helps him along the way. I’m so glad he loves you so much, because I do, too!
Happy Father’s Day to Terry, the man who raised my husband, taught him what it means to be a man, instilled in him a love for the outdoors and sports, helped him find Christ, and helps to make him strive to be strong.
Happy Father’s Day to Papa, the most loving and toughest man I know, the only grandfather with whom I’ve ever had a relationship, a man who has been proud of me for my whole life, and who loved my mom when she didn’t have parents. Thank you for helping me find Christ and for loving my Nanny so very much for her whole life. You helped me to see what a loving and wonderful marriage should look like.
Happy Father’s Day to Larry, who took my husband under his wing, gave him a place to stay before we got married, made me a part of your family, and has been a consistent part of our lives. I’m so honored to know you, sarcasm and all!
Today has been a tough day. There was a baby dedication at church, the first that I’ve been able to sit through. As I looked at the beautiful boy who was being dedicated, knowing our Angel would have been just a month younger than he, I realized that the further we get in the year, the closer to Angel’s would-have-been, should-have-been age the children will get. It was tough. I cried silently the whole time. Jim shed a few tears of his own. My wonderful friend, Vera, gave me a big hug and said simply, “It sucks.” She acknowledged that it probably won’t get easier, even though she wished she could tell us it would. I told her it still hasn’t gotten easier, it’s just gotten different and that’s all we can expect.
Today, on Father’s Day, I want to celebrate the father of my child, my own father, and the love that they have both taught me. The men listed above mean so much to my life. They are my husband, my dad, my step-dad, my father-in-law, Jim’s step-dad, my grandfather, and a man who has been a guide and strong male figure for much of Jim’s life, from adolescence on. It’s because of these men that I have faith in parenthood, I have love in my life, I have a wonderful husband and I have hope for my future, and for any sons we may someday raise. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that these men will be a wonderful influence throughout my life and in the lives of my children. All of them loved Angel and mourned her with us.
I was always a daddy’s girl, and I called my dad “Daddy” into adulthood. My dad was always a rock in my life, a stronghold, someone I knew without any hesitation would be there for me every step of the day. When I had to make the call from Japan to tell him that Angel had died, it was tortuous to hear the sadness in his voice, to hear the immediate tears. When my grandma, his mom, told me how devastated he was by the news, that he showed up at her house with tears streaming down his face, I was so sad for him. But never did he take our grief and make it about him; he was simply supportive. He was willing to fly to Japan, or to help pay for my sister to get there as soon as possible. He was ready to get Jim and me on a plane home as soon as he could. He was so generous to let us stay with him for a month before we closed on our house (including our crazy new puppy, in the last few days of our time there). He has been constantly supportive, constantly there for me. Even though in my childhood I only saw him on the weekends, due to my parents’ divorce when I was just three years old, I always knew I could count on him, that there was no replacing him. I loved my mom’s second husband, but he was not my dad. I love my mom’s current husband, but he is not my dad. I have a dad. I love my dad. Without his influence and encouragement, I would not have made it in Colorado when I moved after high school. I would not have finished college and gone on to finish grad school. I would not have had gotten in contact with a friend of his who works for the same company I do now and been able to find my job. Even at my ripe old age of 28, I cannot imagine my life without my dad.
The kind of relationship I have with my dad is the kind I envisioned for our daughter to have with Jim. It’s such a beautiful relationship, and I know that Jim would have been so very loving, but not spoiling, to our daughter, the same way my dad always was with my sister and me. I know how much my dad loves my sister’s kids, and it kills me that he doesn’t get to love on my daughter the same way he loves on the other little ones. I know that someday, no matter how we become parents again, he will love our kids beyond any measure.
So, on Father’s Day, I want to wish my dad a Happy Father’s Day. You are so much more than I ever could have dreamed a father could be.
And to my amazing husband, thank you for being the father of my child, for promising to stay with me forever, for loving our daughter and mourning her by my side, and for loving the idea of our future children along with me. I could never have dreamed of a better partner in life than you.
Happy Father’s Day to all of you men out there – both fathers today and those who are expecting, and those who will eventually be fathers.