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Happy or Sad on Father's Day?

Twins fatherless and sad

This post is for those who are sad, empty, in pain, or even angry on Fathers Day. You may see all the "perfect family" pictures and feel left out.⁣

It's not fair to wonder what it's like to have a dad, or BE a dad, or a dad who lost their kid already. So many different tragedies.⁣

There is no such thing as a perfect family. Every seemingly perfect family has their share of tragedy under the surface. ⁣

I met my dad for the first time when I was 15 and in a foster home. My identical twin sister in the photo with me went into a different foster home. I had very little contact with my father, my sister, or any other blood relatives after that.

I started running at about that time. I hated running. It wasn't me. I wasn't a natural.⁣

I pushed through the beet red face phase and the sore muscles and the nasty shin splints.⁣

My body adapted to running and it became my therapy and I went on to run marathons.⁣

When I was a professional in my job and running marathons my dad had a chance to tell me he was proud of me even though he said he had nothing to do with who I became.⁣

But that is not true. The circumstance helped form who I am. ⠀⁣

Who knows what else I could have done to self medicate if I didn't have running all those years? The running was a blessing too.⁣

I had a chance to forgive him for abandoning me before he died. He had his own issues. He was merely surviving his own luggage.⁣

Don't use your tragedy and pain to be an excuse to be mean and grumpy. Just smile and say something nice anyway. In your own words, whatever they are. I have learned to smile and say Happy Fathers day, even though it's never really happy for me.⁣

I make my own rules. I carry my own hurt beneath the surface. Let the others have their happy moments.⁣

If you have a chance to forgive, give it and move on, especially if they ask for it. It doesn't always mean it's appropriate for them to be a part of your life, but it means you can get on with yours.⁣

None of us gets a free pass, no matter how it might appear to you.⁣

So, make it the best day ever anyway. Make your own rules.⁣ For many years I ran and practiced martial arts for therapy. I'm older now and the impact is hard on my bones, strong as they are from lifting weights all those years too, so running and swimming are my therapies now, among many other wonderful things in life.

I know it's hard, but make your own rules and smile anyway. Just say Happy Father's Day to the others, and you will find people who get you too - and that this is a holiday in which you are happy for others who got to have what you never had.


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