A Bloke’s Father’s Day Message
To all those fathers who may have been misunderstood, but love us nonetheless:
Fellow blogger Curt Fisher, also known as the Apologist to his fans, announced the loss of his father to cancer.
It reminded me of the passing of my own father some ten years ago. There were no such things as blogs at the time that I could write a fitting ode to him.
So with Fathers day looming the Bloke thought he would salute his ole Dad anyhow, albeit posthumously.
Whenever I think of the old man I can still remember the pain that his words inflicted on me. But most of all it was his lack of acceptance that hurt me the most. For sons know all that we really need from our Dad is recognition.
As I got older and became a parent myself I began to realize that he may not have been the mean old guy that I once thought he was. Perhaps his heart was in the right place after all, but he just didn’t know how to express himself in the best way he could have.
The mediator in me now understands that in our communications it is 10% of what we say, and 90% how we say it. We men are lagging far behind our women-folk in conversation skills (and that’s a biological fact guys).
Ironically, it is the things we hate the most about our parents that as we grow older we end up becoming ourselves. That is life’s little way of humbling us we journey through the circle of life and a reason to keep our guard up.
I know from bitter experience that it can be hard for a father to step out of his macho roll and simply say that he loves you. Especially for those who belong to the “be a man” war generation. My Dad and I never really got along but towards the end I know that he finally accepted me in his own way.
Reflecting on the song “The Living Years” by Mike and The Mechanics, it sums up the conflict between a father and son very well:
“Every generation, blames the one before. And all of their frustrations, come beating on your door. I know that I’m a prisoner, to all my father held so dear. I know that I’m a hostage to all his hopes and fears. I just wish I could have told him in the living years.
No crumpled bits of paper. Filled with imperfect thoughts. Stilted conversations, I’m afraid that’s all we’ve got. You say you just don’t see it, he says its perfect sense. You just can’t get agreement, in this present tense. We all talk a different language, talking in defence
Say it loud. Say it clear. You can listen as well as you hear. Its too late when we die to admit we don’t see eye to eye.”
I recommend to all of you whose parents are still alive to tell them that you love them, and don’t procrastinate because life is fleeting and after they’re gone there are no more second chances.
I love ya Pop wherever you are, no matter how many times you may have pissed me off (and I you). So here’s to you Dad and to all those fathers out there who may be misunderstood, but love us nonetheless.
And uh, oh yeah… Happy Father’s Day!