My dad doesn’t believe in Fathers’ Day. In fact, he’s never been big on any of the holidays, except Christmas… Well, Boxing Day. Every year the whole family fills up his house on Boxing Day. And that’s a lot of us. There needs to be a collective noun for Scanlons.
I have spent a lot of my life not really understanding my relationship with my father. There have been times that I hated him for sure, times that I wished that he was more of a stereotypical dad. I was angry with him for not being the dad I thought I was supposed to have. Now that I’m older I have figured out a lot of things that he was trying to teach me when I was a kid and I see some of the benefits of his teachings in myself. I’m also a lot like him in a lot of good ways.
Watching people post pictures of their dads for Fathers’ Day I was sad again that I don’t have a real photo of my dad with me on my wedding day. I’m sad that he didn’t stay for pictures, and then I realize again that I didn’t ask him to, which probably bothered him. Being an adult means understanding the role I play too.
Since having my daughter I also have a better understanding for how much family means to my dad. I think it means more as he gets older. We took her to a basketball game when she was a baby and he walked her around introducing all his friends to her. He proudly introduces her as his ninth grandchild whenever we see him.
Meanwhile while I was wishing that my dad was more like dads you see on TV I had another Dad who was everything I needed. My Gramps helped teach me to read, taught me how to ride my bike. My grandparents took care of us and helped us play and have fun and provided for us.
And then there’s this guy:
He wanted to be a dad his whole life and I got to make him one. And I gifted him with the most awesome little girl in the world. How’s that for a Fathers Day present?
Joe is everything I could have wished as a father for my child. He’s engaged, he’s loving and he’s much better at playing than I am. He also challenges her, the way my dad challenged me.
I guess the biggest thing about Joe is that I was never planning to be a mother, but when we met and got married he convinced me that I could be a good one, and we’ve done alright.