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The best gift I could give my father for father's day

by Cordelia & Patrick Mordi

What does being a father mean? Is he the one who teaches you to ride a bike? Encouraging you to get back up after you fall and scrape your knee. That administrator of tough love. Was he the one having tea parties and wearing a tiara with you and your stuffed animals? The softie with a big heart. Did he help you carry your stuff into your dorm room? Seeing you off into your adult years while maintaining that ever-present and unshakeable strength.

Is he the one you called when things went off the rails at work? Forever that shoulder to lean on and the warm hug to wrap you up. Ultimately a father is neither an anchor to hold us back nor a sail to take us there but a guiding light whose love shows us the way.

This Father's Day, remember the role he played in your life.

Maybe you only see each other a few times a year at this point, life tends to do that, but believe you me, those times are the highlights for your old man. Given that we all have so much going on, it’s nice to have a day that we can devote to celebrating fatherhood and give credit where it’s due. And what exactly is fatherhood? What makes a man a father, other than simply having a child.

 



  • Protector – Your dad is the ultimate shelter from the storm, whether that storm is literal or figurative, if he can absorb the pain and misery so you don’t have to, you know he will.
  • Provider – Of course this isn’t the case for every family but your pops is often the one providing that shelter from the storm.  He’s generally the breadwinner of the family and makes sure he can give you what need to grow up without worry. Maybe that means long days and longer nights but he does what he’s gotta do.
  • Leader – The kind of sacrifice father’s make is the definition of leadership by example, they may work hard but it’s all for a greater goal. And if you’re dad is anything like mine, he may work hard but he certainly plays just as hard, if not harder.
  • Teacher – I’m not sure how or why dads have so many seemingly random things to teach but the skills they impart to us somehow end up being the ones that stick.
  • Acceptance – You and your old man may be nothing alike but what makes a father a dad is his ability to not only accept you, your quirks and interests but embrace them and encourage you to go confidently in your direction.

A father's Day gift is an expression of gratitude

For the person who has given me so much in my life, how do I express my gratitude in my father's day gift giving? It’s a fair question but don’t get wrapped up in the pressure of it all, he may have sacrificed a whole helluva lot for you, but really, no pressure. Your pops is your pops and he’s going to appreciate whatever you do. At the end of the day this is an occasion to honor him and here are some things to consider when shopping for that.

 

  • Passion – What does he like to do? On this day, shower him in the ability to dive into whatever his favorite activity is.
  • Connection – Consider something you guys can share. Experiences and giving your time are great for this. If you’re both into sports, grab tickets to a game. If it’s the outdoors that get you pumped, go fishing or on a hike. Both foodies? Chow down at your favorite spot. Whatever it may be for you, cement that connection even more on Father’s Day.
  • Acknowledgment – This is the one that really matters, a heartfelt expression of gratitude that shows you recognize what he’s put into you. It could honestly be as simple as a card with a heartfelt message.

I always used to get my dad the latest gadget because I thought that was what you did for Father’s Day. After years of obsolete tech piling up in a never-opened drawer, I realized I was missing the point entirely. Nowadays, we fire up the grill, toss some steaks on and crack a few cold ones. Classic. Some years we’ll make it to a ballgame if it’s possible. The important thing, I’ve found, is simply to be available, even if it’s only over the phone from a distance. Just make sure you don’t get him something better than you get your mom, in fact, that might be the only rule to keep in mind. That and no ties. He’s got enough ties.

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