I know that Father's Day (like Mother's Day) can be a hard day for many. Not everyone grew up in an ideal family situation, and as a chaplain, I've heard many stories of neglect, abandonment, and abuse. I was lucky to have a loving and involved father, and yet still grieve his death over 30 years ago when I was a small child. I'm left with a handful of photos and sweet memories...and also the holes that marked his absence from graduations, my wedding, and the birth of my children. As I was growing up, Father's Day was spent at the cemetery with my mom and nana, "visiting" the graves of my dad and papa (my mom's dad), who died when I was in high school.
|Dad and me, 1977|
|Papa and me, 1979|
|Joe Porter, me, and Pastor Phillip Woods at my high school graduation|
I often tell those I counsel that while we aren't always given the family we long for, we are given the opportunity to create our own as we seek out supportive friends and a mate. I feel beyond lucky to have married in to such a warm, loving, encouraging family. My father-in-law, Dan Call, has embraced me from the beginning and has been an example of strength, wisdom, and kindness. He is a great dad to John, his sister, Amy, and me, as well as being a wonderful Popaw to Brady and Maryn.
|My father-in-law, Dan Call, 2008|
|John and our "angels", 2013|