As you may know, yesterday (19th June 2005) was Father's Day in much of the Western world. Like many new dads, I'm not quite used to being on the receiving end so it was a genuine surprise when I was presented with a card (featuring a picture of me) and present this morning. Trying to prise it out of our son's hands was not so much fun but I'm sure he meant well. He made biscuits at nursery as well but, similarly, my tea was cold by the time I managed to get my hands on one. Good job they were delicious. Until our little boy's birth, Father's Day was more about remembering to get to the Post Office in time and if not, what convincing excuses I could think up. Then that life-changing Big Event happened and now I get it. Why we have Mother's Day and Father's Day, that is. It's because there's so much effort, time, frustration, stress and sacrifice involved in being a parent. Well why didn't they tell me? I probably would have been a tiny bit nicer as a teenager if they'd have sat me down and presented a logical explanation as to why I should appreciate their hard work. I'm sure I would have listened intently. Come to think of it, maybe they did tell me but I had my Walkman turned up too loud. But then I also hadn't realised how much fun and happiness was involved in being a parent. I don't feel so bad about the teenage years because they were surely far outweighed by the joy of my "angel" years, of which there were many. Probably. And now it's turned full circle and I'm the one loving the angel years, dreading the teenage years and all the time glad that at least once a year, we get a special pat on the back, even if the full reason is not quite understood just yet. It makes me wonder whether parents are only fully appreciated when they become grandparents. Hope you had a happy Father's Day and don't forget to let your own father know that he did a good job. Go on, make more of a fuss than usual, especially now you know what it's like.
Father's Day - Now I Understand!