How would I begin?
Mothers, mothers are easy to define; the ideal to the nightmare. Libraries are filled with countless volumes; every manner of poetry, prose inspired by, dedicated to and centered around…mothers.
Some fathers’ only contribution to their children is that they were in the room when the child was conceived. Some believe that the perfect father is always there to hold mom’s hand during birth all the way through their child’s life up to signing the check for the wedding.
There are fathers like mine. Never home to hold anyone’s hand during most of the pain; he was away at sea; and then too often at war.
During the few times we talked in my youth he told me of the wonderful things he planned for me; most his unfulfilled dreams for himself.
Is a father that guy you see on a Lifetime show; bedecked in a feather boa, sitting on a too small chair, sipping tea and chatting with the Barbie and teddy while smiling warmly at his fiveish daughter. Or the all-round sports guy that’s sharing the secret to the perfect curve to his little league hopeful.
Setting titles aside and letting a few years pass from the night a man knew their mother and now writes his required thirteen checks a year, twelve to mother and one near a birthday; mother has been there in all the roles a mother must be and a few more; mother and child now a team.
Someone new is there, someone that makes mom smile a bit, will do the dishes (occasionally) and has been known, over a dinner out, to debate the merits of ordering the lamb over beef, fills his camera and phone with images of the original team. And they even concede to the younger during some debates because they listen and respect.
At some point in time the “other” may assume the odious title of ‘step’.
My son has a lovely “step-daughter” and she has a terrific father, far, far better than he ever had. James is blessed with an unfathomable amount of love, genuine respect and admiration for all and an unwavering integrity (his game of hoops is good, his expertise at beach boccie ball is world class).
Fathers: givers; of love, of trust, of undivided attention and respect.
Happy father’s day to all the men and women that are being the best father they can be.
Namaste. peace out