Father’s Day has always felt like a kind of half-holiday to me. Mother’s Day is celebrated with roses, chocolates, and “Thanks for giving birth to me, Mom” cards but Father’s day is hardly ever the same grand production. Instead, fathers are often lazily given the same power tools they got last year and offered a day off. The extravagance that accompanies Mother’s Day is rarely mirrored in celebration of our dads.
In honor of Father’s Day 2020, I’ve decided to thank my dad for five things he’s taught me.
- Real men stay. In America, there’s a pandemic of fatherless homes that can severely damage the future of the children in them. Kids without a dad in the house are less likely to go to college and more likely to end up in jail. The biggest blessing my dad provided was staying to raise me. He gave me an incalculable advantage that so many of my peers, unfortunately, don’t have.
- A positive work ethic is more important than the job you do. I was 12 before I knew my dad didn’t like his job. I never heard him complain about it, and certainly never knew he didn’t enjoy. All I saw was my dad going to work and coming home at the end of the day. As I got older I realized my dad begrudgingly slaved for a steady source of income with which he could provide for his family. My dad chose to put his family’s well-being over his own comfort and for that, I’m eternally thankful. He took pride in his work and taught me that no matter the job you’re doing, it is worth doing right.
- Apologize when you are wrong. As kids, it’s rare for adults to apologize to us even when they do something wrong. My dad was different. When he knew he was wrong or handled something poorly he would come to us and apologize. That made a lasting impact and showed me true leadership. Fathers should lead humbly, admit when they’re wrong, ask forgiveness and move on. This is something I want to carry when I have kids of my own.
- The little moments are the ones that count. When I was growing up and my mom needed something from the store, my dad would take me on “midnight mission runs.” Sometimes we would go to the grocery store at 11:30 at night in our pajamas looking for things Mom would need for the next day. I would zealously guard those trips from my brother. Those are the moments with Dad that meant the most to me. When we take time for people, it’s often the small moments they remember as opposed to the grand gestures or the gifts you bought them. I’m just south of 21 years old and “midnight mission runs” are still something I do with my dad because it’s in the moments in the car where we truly connect.
- Each person is worth getting to know. My dad is a really introverted guy but he still takes time to get to know the clerks at the stores he frequents. He will ask them how they’re doing and gets to know them by name. My dad knows that each person has value and is willing to step outside his comfort zone and let them know that they’re heard and seen. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked into our local Goodwill with my dad and an employee will come up to us and talk his ear off because of the relationship he’s built. Due to the Coronavirus my dad’s favorite store was shut down and when it reopened, my dad was greeted with a big hug from one of the regular employees he had grown to know over the years.
There’s endless source material on which I could write about my dad. He’s incredibly kind and goes out of his way for people. Dads, know that your kids are watching and mentally recording everything you do. Set a good example for them and they will be blessed forever. Set a poor example and they shall reap what you sow.
Happy Father’s Day!
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.