I have a Father, a beautiful one in fact but this year marks almost 30 years of celebrating Father’s Day without him. This is not by choice but by the awful disease we all know as Cancer or a Brain tumour to be exact.
Thirty years is a long time – almost my whole lifetime and lots of things have changed between now and then, but the sadness of Father’s Day still remains.
To be honest I can’t really remember much about the first few Father’s Days after my Dad passed away. I’m sure I would have written on a card or taken a special keepsake out to his graveside. I definitely remember doing this as I got older.
It’s funny though when its time to make the Father’s Day gifts at school or someone asks what you are doing for Father’s Day, when you tell them that your Father died when you were young, that is where the conversation ends. Unless they knew my Dad, the topic just changes to something more light hearted. They may ask what he died from but they rarely ever ask about him. Like what did he do, what did he like and other stuff you would ask for a living Father. Of course, it makes you sad talking about someone not in your life, but he is still my Dad.
Now I am lucky enough to have an amazing husband and Dad to my children. I think I overcompensate on Father’s Day now as I don’t want them to miss out on anything - the Dad jokes, the cuddles, the games, the laughter and smiles that Dad’s can bring to children’s lives.
When you lose your Father, you also lose the Grandfather to your Children. I often wonder what he would be like with them and if they would have him wrapped around their little fingers.
We are getting closer to the ages my Mum and Dad were when my Dad passed away. This brings a whole new realization and sadness to what happened so long ago. I think the grief has been greater now then it has ever been. Grief doesn’t have a timeline and there is no end, but I believe losing someone you love makes you appreciate so much more what you have.
I know Father’s Day is just one day of the year and like me you probably think about your Father all year round. But all I ask is please this Father’s Day think how lucky you are to have your Dad with you. Laugh at his jokes, embrace his cuddles and just ‘be’ in the moment with him on Father’s Day. If you can’t see him in person, pick up the phone and call him or send him a card. So many people out there don’t get this chance, so please think how lucky you are that you can.
And if you know someone who’s Father isn’t with them this Father’s Day let them know you are thinking of them and better still ask them about their Father and listen while they tell you everything they loved about him.
And if like me, you are celebrating Father’s Day without your Father, I am thinking of you.