for the love of dads

This morning in Maine the skies broke loose with heavy rains that rivaled any monsoon we experienced in India. You know the kind of rain that sounds like a freight train roaring by? More than an hour of that before it eased up to a lighter rainfall. Then another train roared by. The rain has been falling steadily all day and I welcomed the chance to let a few tears fall unnoticed as I walk my two dogs and contemplate fathers on this Father’s Day 2015.

Dads are supposed to be the strong silent types but in my experience dads are the emotional ones. They wear their hearts on their sleeves, they fear they can’t protect us from ourselves, they give us all they’ve got and then some. Often they do it without saying much or expecting much in return. In a perfect world, no parent would ever survive their child. But this is not a perfect world. The trip of a lifetime would not have been possible without the substantial support given to Scott by his father. In retrospect I believe that Scott would not have lived that extra time or painted those 200 paintings and touched so many lives with his story if he had not been able to travel to exotic Goa and have one last adventure. That gift was monumental and a testament to one father’s love for his child. I think about my father-in-law often and never without tremendous gratitude, awe, and love.

When I lost my own father 14 years ago I lost the one person who always believed in me, always had my back, and loved me unconditionally. I remember being devastated by the loss of not just the man but the feeling he gave me of being safe in the knowledge that I was loved like that. I thought I would never have that feeling again. I was wrong. Scott loved me like that. I don’t know how I was so lucky to have that true supportive love twice in my life but I did. I guess it had something to do with my father setting the standard and me not settling for anyone unless he was my number one fan the way my dad had been.

I have four brothers and each of them has a unique way of being there for me. I want to acknowledge them on Father’s Day also. I have been lucky to be surrounded by strong, authentic, loving, emotionally expressive men all of my life. I am blessed and I know it.
It is still raining.

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