Today is Father’s Day in Ireland, and perhaps in many other countries too. My dad never really found it important to celebrate these special days for moms or dads. He felt every day had to be special and important!
He passed away some years ago and I have a storeroom of wonderful memories which I’ll carry with me for the rest of the my life.
So with that in mind….
Once when I was little I cried because I fell of my bicycle. You held me close and kissed my tears away until I was smiling again.
When I grew older and had a broken heart the compassion in your eyes was more than any words could say, showing your love by just being there for me.
You lived with a real joie de vivre. You didn’t waste time, not while I knew you anyway. You were always busy, at work and with you family and friends. You played with us, cycled with us, swam with us, picnicked with us, camped with us, made sand castles with us….. You did everything one hundred percent. And if you had a spare moment you would read.
You didn’t drink coffee, although as you mellowed in age one cup every now and then was acceptable. And you enjoyed good food, especially made by mom.
You were a man of principles and a man of real faith. I really admire that now. Maybe as a teenager I didn’t because I wanted to do the same things, wear the same things, say the same things as all those other teenagers, just to be cool . I didn’t want to stand out and be different. In the end it didn’t really matter. And you knew that. It wasn’t about being popular or wearing the same trendy stuff as the next one, or going to the same party as the rest. I was never about that, was it?
You loved your wife dearly.
And you loved your five children equally. I suppose that fairness shined through your whole life. You had this wonderful gift to accept everyone as an equal. It didn’t matter what their colour was, if they were rich or poor, if they were an intellectual or illiterate. In your eyes they were all human beings made in the image of God.
We did have our disagreements, I admit. You were very strong willed and I am as well, I know.
But you were also extremely patient, especially when it came to explaining maths and science. Before my final exams at school you explained for hours on end about the various forms of energy and the interactions between atoms and molecules. Not sure if I understood it all then or even now, but the precious time – sometimes till deep in the night – we spent studying and talking about life I will hold dear to my heart forever.
Thank you for being my dad.