An Existential View of Father’s Day

Dear friends & colleagues,

Happy Father’s Day

So much about personal congruence and alignment comes from being and belonging. There is a way a father loves that is critical for this alignment to occur. I have written very publicly that I was estranged from my own father. I was very angry with him when he died in a car accident when he was only 44 years old. It has taken much therapy, prayer and grace for me to forgive myself as in some grandiose way I had felt that perhaps my anger had killed him.

I am now older than he would have been, just now transcending his life having turned 45 this May. Deep sigh of relief as I passed that milestone. Now feeling a deeper sense of loss of the life he has missed. As so many planted seeds of rigor, study, dreams, goals, research, and deep prayer are finally reaching a beginning harvest. A harvest he never got to reap. I am also now keenly aware more than ever how difficult it is to live an authentic life and be a parent when sometimes the circles of choice are not concentric and either personal happiness or the children’s best interest has to be sacrificed. Regardless of the gaps in my own imagination of how he could have been a better father, I know I am doing all that I can to be a good mother. Falling short in more ways that I care to admit, I know truly now that he did his best.

I still hold anger, I still hold regret, I still hold ambivalence towards him.
As perplexing as it is, I miss you, Daddy.

FathersDay

Eminem – Mockingbird ♫

Here are some ways to celebrate and reflect upon what our fathers mean to us and how much we are our father’s sons and daughters.

Less heavy, full of compassion,

Jennifer


1) #FathersDay: Treasure Trove of Poems About Fathers

2) #FatherDay: Knocking on Heaven’s Door by Katy Butler and What Broke My Father’s Heart

3) #FathersDay: Do Fathers Matter? What Science is Telling Us About the Parent We’ve Overlooked by Paul Raeburn . . . New York Times Book Review

4) #FathersDay: Friend Eric Best wrote a memoir Into My Father’s Wake that would make Hemingway shed a tear (sample chapter) . . . YouTube: Eric talks about his story

5) #FathersDay: Where would we be without the cathartic experience of cinema? Lost!
Here are some of the most familiar father / son clips in film

6) #FathersDay: Just for fun . . . some famous father / daughter combinations that we know

7) #FathersDay: Who doesn’t want advice from the greatest storyteller of our time: John Steinbeck’s letter to his teenage son “If it is right, it happens — The main thing is not to hurry. Nothing good gets away.” via @brainpicker

8) #FathersDay: Caroline Kennedy ~ Thoughts on Father’s Day

9) #FathersDay: National Fatherhood Initiative: 24 million children in America—one out of three—live without their biological father in the home

10) #FathersDay: If you Don’t Like Your Future Rewrite Your Past … by @RosabethKanter

Note to self: working on it!

Caroline with her father aboard the yacht Honey Fitz, off Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, in August 1963.

Caroline with her father aboard the yacht Honey Fitz, off Hyannis Port, Massachusetts, in August 1963.

Bob Carlisle – Butterfly Kisses ♫

 

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