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"Being Thankful For Dads" - By Paul Wilson

April 07 2023
A father and son with arms around each other.
We’re Thankful for Dads This Father’s Day Although almost any man can be a father, it takes someone special to be a Dad. Dads, whether they are related to us by blood or not, are some of the most important people in our lives. They offer advice, encouragement and so much more as we navigate our way through life. This Father’s Day, take time to thank the Dads who have had a positive impact on you. Find inspiration and some Father’s Day history in this essay by resident Paul Wilson.

Being Thankful For Dads By Paul H. Wilson, resident of The Fountains at Greenbriar, a Watermark community I lay in the hospital bed scheduled for knee surgery the next morning. Since birth, it was my first time spent in a hospital and I was scared. My Dad, was not a man given to outward showings of kind empathy and compassion, and soft feelings were not something I ever expected from him. I do not say this critically but merely as a statement of fact, but that night of pain and apprehension, I was scared. My mother and sister had already been by to share their words, hugs, and encouragements. In their tears I found comfort and they assured that they would be with me in whatever ways possible. But it wasn't until several minutes later when the door quietly opened in the dim room and my Dad slipped quietly in and sat silently down beside me that I felt something new. A few moments passed as if all the air had been taken out of the room, then he simply reached over and covered my hand with his. I heard his voice softly ask, “Are you okay?” “Yes Dad,” came the cracked voice reply that almost sounded foreign to me. He squeezed my hand and kept holding it for several more minutes. No more words. Silence where you could have heard our hearts beat as one. One last squeeze and he was silently gone. As I was able to breathe again, I found that Dad had left in his silent and unexpected touch a strength that would carry me through that next day and the weeks that followed. It was a gift from a parent to a child and from father to son. I have never forgot.

Once each year we take time to celebrate the importance of a Dad in each child's life, and for those of us who have been blessed to have had a Dad, to be thankful in whatever way is most meaningful to us. It is not easy giving meaningful guidance, being loving, encouraging, empowering, providing, and protecting. Such is the expectation that is demanded of Dads and not all measure up to perfection in all areas. Yet without a real Dad or involved. Father figure, all suffer and our lives are diminished.

At the turn of the century, love and wisdom were celebrated on Mother's Day, a tradition growing across the United States. On June 20, 1909 Sonora Dodd created a special holiday to honor. Fathers, too. She approached her local Spokane YMCA and Ministerial Alliance and they chose June 19th. When Sonora was 16, her mother died and her. Father raised her, not an easy task then. Because of his “love and esteem,” Sonora Dodd believed that her. Father deserved a special time of honor just like that given to mothers on Mother's Day. The idea spread across the United States. Congress officially recognized . Father's Day in 1956 in a joint resolution. Finally in 1972, President Richard Nixon permanently established the observance of the third Sunday in June as Father's Day in the United States. As with Mothers, it is a call to celebrate the best in Fathers on a special day and to honor them. “Are you okay?” Many of us lucky to have been asked that simple yet powerful question by a Dad in our life. It may have been our own Dad, or the blessing of those men who have been with us during key moments in our life journey who have been a “Dad” to us and have held our hand and made sure that we were okay.

At The Fountains at Greenbriar and Watermark communities, we join together as a larger community in honoring our Dads and giving thanks for humanness, example, strength, courage and love of family. Thank you to Dads everywhere. Paul H. Wilson is a resident of The Fountains at Greenbriar, a Watermark community, located in Independence, Missouri.

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