I knew, always knew that

Date: 6/6/2024
This coming Sunday, June 17 is Father’s Day, and I will be repeating what I usually do to honor my dad. I will post a lovely picture of my father taken years ago before he was felled by strokes, and will post that on Facebook with a statement of my love and appreciation for all he did for me during his life. My actions will be replicated by many, maybe even by you, as we strive to show our love for our fathers, whether they are still with us or have gone on to their eternal reward.

As I look back and reflect on my relationship with my father, I can honestly say that while we definitely loved each other, expressing that to one another was not something you would hear either of us say to one another as I was growing up. My dad showed his affection by the sacrifices he made for me and for our family, and in turn, I returned that affection through my working to live up to the high standards he set for me.  

My relationship with my father changed greatly as he aged, and as I took on the role of father to my three sons. When we would say our goodbyes after a family gathering, I found myself going up to my dad, giving him a hug, a kiss on the cheek, and telling him “I love you dad.” In turn, he would always return the sentiment with, “I love you Joe.” Those occasions are what I remember most about my dad, it was as if we grew emotionally and didn’t let outside issues cloud the feelings we had for one another. It was also during those years that I developed a deeper appreciation for all he did for me during my childhood, and I saw how his high set of standards helped shape the person I am today. 

It is in some ways sad, that now after they are gone, we have a deeper appreciation for the role our fathers played in our lives. While my father and I found a way to verbalize our feelings for one another, it was only at the end of his life that we developed that strong emotional bond. This Sunday, when I post that picture, and write my message, I will work to find words that somehow capture the love and appreciation I have for a man who had such a significant impact on my life. I believe in my heart, that this Sunday and all future Father’s Days, he will somehow answer, “I knew, always knew that.”