We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I hope all our readers who are fathers enjoy this day with their families.
My father and mother divorced when I was 8, though he'd already left the house when I was 6. For a good portion of my life, my memories of him were of weekend visitations, driving around with 4 kids in Triumph TR5, (2 in the front, 2 in the 'back', which wasn't really a seat). There was a period of several years when he lived in Micronesia with his wife and my half-sister, so our direct contact was minimal. By the time I was 14, I was usually taking a bus to see him for weekends, once a month or so, or for a week in the summer. Eventually I spent three full summers with him while I worked at the Jersey Shore. I was in college, and it was a good place to spend my summer months.
Divorce is difficult on everyone involved. I remember spending time being angry at my father for leaving. I give my mother a lot of credit for knowing that it's important for children to have a father in their lives, encouraging and enabling us to take time to see him. Even scolding us when we spoke ill of him. Eventually, as I got older and more educated, my relationship with my father became much closer. I am lucky to still have him around, and I will be seeing him later today for the first time in 4 months (thanks to this lockdown).
In a way, I may have been lucky, as my mother remarried, and I wound up having a step-father (though he was not officially a step-father as I still had my father). A tough WWII vet, a good man who did his able best to raise 6 children, 4 of which were not his own. He passed 15 years ago. I was able to have conversations about the war, the Depression (which he grew up during) and learned about real estate (his profession). He was a do-it-yourself man, unfortunately not very skilled, but taught me how to do plumbing, auto, and minor electrical work. There were things he passed on to me that my father never could have.
Being a father has no template. We are certainly not perfect. Hopefully, our mistakes are good learning experiences, for both us and our children.
Today will be a good day to share some of the better stories, both good and bad, with our fathers or our children. Of course, we can do that any day, but it's nice to have a day to really focus. Enjoy your day with your family.
Lost my father in 2014 after a long decline. He was a great dad, accomplished pilot, owned 33 different airplanes on his life, several air related business. He was a hard working dad, cared for his siblings when his parents were too drunk to care but did it willing. When my mother was ill, he changed to a man totally selfish and irresponsible. I had to take care of all his financials, paid off loans for him and rescued his business from a gold digger second wife. I grew to despise him for the rest of his life. However, I put the bad stuff behind me and remembered the good. I learned albeit slowly what to avoid doing to my family what he did. His negative legacy was a lesson. I am a better person for it.