Being a father is not easy, becoming a father is…. well, not the point of this post.
Today is my twentieth Father’s Day as a dad, my fifty-fifth as a son, and eighth Father’s Day without my dad. My dad passed away July 20, 2009 after a brief illness and my brothers and I took his cremains to France in June 2010 and he remains at rest and peace with the world.
7:41 AM Somewhere in the middle of the paragraph above my brother, David, called and we talked… when were finished talking, I got back to writing – 8:11 AM.
I don’t believe there has been a day since, when I haven’t thought of my dad; just think of him, no judgement one way or another. There are days, like today, when he is constantly on my mind. On these days, I call my brothers and check in, or they call me and check in, either way we talk. Sometimes, we talk about dad, or we talk about our kids, or we talk about growing up; mostly we talk about the thread that holds us together – mom and dad and being brothers.
It hasn’t always been easy being brothers or sons or fathers. There is no instruction manual, only a guide.
We’ve become closer as brothers, and as men, since he passed. I suspect we’ll become even closer when mom is gone, but I try not to dwell on that, but I know that day will come. It comes for all of us.
9:01 AM – and that is when the phone rang, it was my mom, just calling to check in and to wish me a Happy Father’s Day. I closed the lid on my laptop so I could focus….
9:47 AM – I am back to writing.
When the phone rang, I was struggling with my next thought, the next line, the next phrase.
I answered, “I was just thinking about you.”
We talked about what mothers and sons talk about; she asked me what I had on my plate for Father’s Day and asked if I was going to write a blog post (yep, my mom reads my blog) and I told her I was writing when she called. Then, I asked her if I could read her what I had started; and I did. I opened the lid and read to her; I found a couple of edits and corrected them.
Towards the end of my phone call, my brother, Warren texted. When I finished the call, I texted back.
I am back to struggling with words. It’s because it is difficult to put in words the complicated feelings of fatherhood.
9:59 – my brother, Warren calls. He had visited mom Saturday.
10:20 back to writing.
Earlier this morning, I watched ESPN E:60 – “The Perfect Moment,” an in-depth profile of Cincinnati Reds pitcher Michael Lorenzen. It’s the story of a father and son, it’s not a perfect story and I wept. I shared the story with my brothers and I hope they get to watch. I hope you do as well, here’s a clip. The complete story isn’t available, yet. When it is, I’ll tweet it @MakingDaysCount
I remember watching the highlight of Michael Lorenzen’s home run two days after his father’s funeral. It was moving then, it’s even more moving when I learned the rest of the story.
Being dad isn’t easy, being a son isn’t much easier, and being both is complicated. We are all doing our best to do our best. Leading by example, learning from our mistakes, and trying not to repeat them.
It’s Father’s Day, so I think of my father and my brothers, AND my mom, AND my kids, and my wife. I think of how I got here and where I am headed, but mostly I think of today and what I am going to do to make this a great day.
This could possibly be the best day ever
And the forecast says that tomorrow will likely be
A million and six times better
So make every minute count
Jump up, jump in and seize the day
And let’s make sure that in every single possible way
Today is gonna to be a great day
I have chores – even on Father’s Day, I am going to grill steak this afternoon, and I am going to watch the Astros take on the Boston Red Sox, but most importantly, I am gonna make the day count because that’s what I do. Making the Days Count, one day at a time, one Father’s Day, one step, one day at a time.
What are you gonna do to make YOUR day great?