Ready for some honesty?
I always meet Father’s Day with mixed feelings.
After a tumultuous time through my childhood and adolescence, my dad and I went for fifteen years without speaking to each other. He began to come around again, and I thought it’d be different.
But a year ago, I started to really look at the relationships in was in, and I realized so many of them were unequal, or toxic, or the people were just plain using me. The relationship with my dad was one of them. Not long ago, I had to lovingly tell him I was done.
It was really hard.
I wasn’t going to say anything about it—I’m a happy person and I write happy things—but some of you have gone through this too, and you needed to hear you aren’t alone.
However, I’m bringing this back to joy and hope. (There’s always hope.)
In the past year while I’ve been looking at people with my eyes wide open, I’ve seen some amazing fathers and husbands. They listen to their children with their hearts open and, while they aren’t perfect, they do the best they can every minute of the day. They put on tutus, and sit in tiny chairs, and bake beignets when their daughters want to be like Tiana in The Princess and the Frog.
The best thing I’ve seen recently was a post from a photographer I met in Paris, who said his little girl asked if he’d carry her, and he thought to himself that he’d carry her whenever she asks until the day he drops.
The hopeful part? That one day I’ll meet a man who will be this kind of father–someone kind who loves from his whole heart and treasures the gift he’s been given.
That’s what I’m choosing.