I had grand plans to share a piece of an old essay I wrote about my dad this week. But when I sat down to read it and retype it I ended up sobbing like a baby, unable to see through my tears.
My dad was torn from us way too soon. He died when I was fourteen—before he had even turned forty—after fighting awfully hard and slowly deteriorating in front of our eyes thanks to that bitch cancer. Since then, Father’s Day has always been a weird thing for me. In recent years, it’s been fun to watch my girls get all excited about showering their daddy in love. At the same time, it’s always reminder of the gaping void that’s there.
My dad was a great dad. He was the best dad. Remembering him whistling in the car as he carted my brothers and sister and I around or coaching baseball games or making us laugh makes things slightly easier. It’s still a hole. But at least it’s a hole that was at one time filled with something amazing. Not everyone is lucky enough to be able to say that.
So instead of hiding from anything father-related, I’ve decided to celebrate it this year. My dad was one of those hands-on dads who was always there for everything, video camera on his shoulder and bright smile on his face. Way too often, dads get a bad rap. We forget about the day-to-day superheroes while getting wrapped up in absent (or present but useless) fathers. But they’re there! And they’re awesome…
Parker Fitzgerald for Kinfolk Magazine
If you have any fun dad-related memories you’d like to share, please do!