Updated: Oct 9, 2020
As the world seems to spin out of control with protesting, elections, COVID, and market volatility. It is a great time to step back and remember that this country was built on fathers. Fathers who were brought up on good morals and the people in mind.
A father will always leave a legacy. He who creates and strives to raise the value in others and the world will outlive himself.
According to Dictionary.com, the word "father" comes from the Latin word root pater, and Greek word patḗr. Middle English word fader, or old English fæder in parallel with the German word "vater". "No, I am your vater!" Star Wars nostalgia aside, the word is defined with a variable string of definitions including to be creator, founder, or author. One of the leading men in a city or town. Basically, it is a man who has put himself into the role of being respected due to parental rights, achievements, knowledge, and wisdom.
Parental fathers are in my opinion the strongest.
Those who take the responsibility seriously and put themselves at the bottom of their own priority list have the best character. Think of what fathers have to do to enable their children to grow. Provide for the family through hard work and dedication. Most lose sleep and precious time in their own lives to do this. Allowing their kids to eat, have a good education, sports, clothes, and any other need, and even wants.
What do you, want dad? You have spent at least 18 years providing for me. I have been taking and taking all my young life. I can only hope that I have given you something in return. Something remotely valuable enough to give it some meaning in this journey that we have together.
The time that you have taken to go to every event after a long day's work. The nights that you read a book at my bedside to help me sleep when you could have been watching the game while drinking a beer. The advice and words of wisdom you offered when I came home bruised up or crying. Caring enough to discipline me so that I might become a person of value to the world. The ball games, arcade visits, the first beer. Memories all given by your selfless duty as a father.
There is a poem that encompasses some of what a father does. The goal is to take it as it is and then read in between the lines of what is happening as well. Think of how candid the father is being. See what he offers to the little boy. The guidance that is given and the realization that is discovered in the end.
The father's love and adoration for his son are palpable! He realizes and learns from failure. This takes a strong and humble man to do. He proceeds to show how he will change, and improve upon himself. Who are we to judge so harshly upon others when our lives have their own flaws. If only we treated everyone with such compassion and cognizance of ourselves. The awareness could bring about some major change! Let's change this habitual criticism and such emotional outbursts and put ourselves in other people's shoes such as this father has done with his son.
Patients may not have been a strong suit when you began but I know now that it has become the best quality. We both have learned along the way. I have tested you, time and time again. Your vision for raising me to be the best version of myself always persisted. We've had some heavy difficult days. I never appreciated you in my corner as much as I do now. The complaining and selfishness that radiated towards you seem so piddling with respect to the things you have given up for me. You work hard to provide for the family and as a child, I could not understand how that was more important than playing catch and going to the arcade.
What are your dreams?
How can I help?
All the responsibilities may seem trivial. You might say, "Of course, he did all those things because it is expected of him." But I encourage you to step back and think. But what if he did not. We all have choices to make at our own free will. The consequences may sway our decisions but how far does that take us. Just a small difference in his mindset could mean you grew up to be a totally different person! I want to recognize that we are all humans, with imperfections, blemishes, dreams, and goals. That includes our fathers.
Thank you, fæder for everything you have sacrificed in your own life to give me my own. Thank you for leading by example, teaching me to be a better man while pushing me to strive to be the best version of myself. Let's commit to adding value to those who gave us a life worth living.
Collins, William. “Father.” Dictionary.com, Dictionary.com, 2012, www.dictionary.com/browse/father.
Carnegie, Dale, et al. How to Win Friends and Influence People. Pushpak Publications, 2019.
Larned, W. Livingston. "Father Forgets", 1936,