Father’s day brings images of toolboxes, fishing poles, neckties, sports teams, six-packs, and trucks. Are these examples really what a father is? Dads get this rap for being lazy, not present, goofy, and bumbling fools only around to provide for the family financially. They go to work, come home, grab a beer, and head off to their man cave. Only to be seen when something needs to be fixed, or the lawn needs to be mowed. What about the millions of Dads who are there? To me, a father is someone who teaches you right from wrong. Someone who helps you fix things you can’t do yourself (whether mechanical or emotional).
My father taught me being a man has nothing to do with your ability to differentiate between a phillips and a flathead screwdriver. Instead, he showed me it’s about having character. It’s about how you treat people, being a good person. My father helped with homework, school projects, cooking dinner, and doing house chores. My father never “watched” his kids. He was present in our lives. Sure we did the “typical” guy stuff. He took us fishing and taught us how to fix things, how to throw a ball, change a tire, or check your oil. He also taught us to respect your fellow man, how to open the door for people, not just women. When I came out, my father didn’t bat an eye. He told me, “You are my son, it makes no difference to me, and I love you.” I will always thank him for that moment.
My father, any good father, teaches his kids how to be a well-rounded level headed functional adult. On this Father’s Day, I say, “Thank you, Dad!!” Thank you for being a positive constant in my life, for being a positive role model for me. You were and are someone I continue to look to for guidance and support….and I will always call you first if something is broken.