Any day that is designated to celebrate a specific group of people leaves me with mixed feelings. On one hand, I am overjoyed to recognize the efforts and love of, in this instance, Dads everywhere. My Dad is a generous and hard working man. An athlete and all around big guy, in personality and stature, he never wanted for a son after he was blessed with two girls. We were enough. He taught us how to get back up after a fall, and rebound from life's disappointments. When you're a teenage girl, there are many. My grandfather is also a gem of a human being, with an enormous heart and even greater spirit. There are many men in my life to give thanks for.
On the other hand, a close friend of mine lost his father around this time a few years back, and I can't help but think that where there is celebration, there is also the potential for bittersweetness. Everyone's circumstances are different. Non-biological fathers stand in and exceed the roles of a father, deployed dads are very far from home and their loved ones, or mothers go it alone. Others might not have a close relationship with their fathers so they are starting new traditions with children of their own. Nonetheless, Father's Day is open to interpretation. A silent prayer on a fishing dock, remembering summers spent with Dad before he passed, a day at the Rodeo, or a banana cream pie in the backyard, the residual smell of barbecue lingering in the air.
Dad volunteered at a Church carnival all of last week with the exception of Saturday when he worked at Monster Jam. He actually slept most of Sunday, fatigue setting in. But we spent time by the pool, noshing on burgers, dogs, and smoked chicken thighs. Nana's German potato salad was two parts German and one part Italian. She adapted the recipe like her mother used to, bringing a little Sicilian flair to the table. However Sunday is spent, may everyone find something or someone to celebrate. And of course, a pie makes any celebration doubly delicious. Happy belated Father's Day.