Waiting for my return flight from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, where I attended the annual conference of the Travel Media Association of Canada, I am thinking, like so many today, about my dad. Do we need a special day to remember our fathers? I miss him every day, not only today, and yet admit that the pain of him being gone for so long somewhat intensified when I woke up this morning. However, the true reason why we need Father’s Day is to remind young men, the future fathers to be, that Father’s Day is every day. In so many homes, children are growing up without engaged fathers, and millions of kids grow up without any male role model in their lives. Yet there are many dads out there that are engaged and that struggle between their obligation to work long hours to provide for their families. Let’s just say that the workplace is often not very accommodating to moms and dads, and it becomes increasingly difficult to leave work behind even when at home.
I was fortunate to have a loving, caring and engaged father in my life and a mother who stayed at home for most of my childhood. I have so many fond memories of spending time with my dad. He himself did not have his dad around for many years, as grandpa Leopold Opsomer died during WWII when my father was only 10 years old.
And, yes, I am a single mom, so my own son did not enjoy having his father around for many important milestones in his life. He was, however, very lucky to find loving role models in his uncles both in Belgium and in Israel. I am grateful for all the love and care they provided and the support they gave to both of us on so many occasions. It is the overall network of extended family and friends that have helped him grow up. It indeed takes a village!
There are so many children in foster care and in need of a good home, a father or two, a family. I wish laws would make the adoption process an easy one so that eager men can become someone’s father on Father’s Day and every day. I am wishing a very Happy Father’s Day to all dads and those who take on this so important role for somebody special in their life.