Father’s Day is a few days away. Frankly, I don’t really like Father’s Day as it’s currently celebrated. Don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of honoring fathers. I just don’t like the idea that we can relegate that honor to just one day a year and reduce it to a matter of buying token gifts that no one needs. I guess I’m one of those cynical people who believes that Father’s Day (and Mother’s Day) has been hijacked by marketers and turned into an excuse for materialism.
But it’s not good enough to smell a rotten egg. I have to lay a better one. So, let me offer a different vision for Father’s Day. I simply want to hang out with my wife and children and delight in them. Their gift to me will be the act of letting me give them something which only I can give: Fatherly delight. I believe that fathers should be givers. We should be giving our time, attention, and affection to our families.
That is all I care to do on Father’s Day. I don’t want to do anything out-of-the-ordinary. I just want to be a father and do what father’s do. I’m not talking about drinking beer in front of the TV. I’m talking about spending quality time with my family, connecting with my children, cultivating an environment in which our family can flourish, and so forth.
So, here’s my agenda for Father’s Day:
1) Sleep in.
2) Make waffles and scrambled eggs with my kids.
3) Have a family dance party & tickle time (except for my wife because she’s 29 weeks pregnant).
4) Make some sandwiches and other munchies and eat a picnic lunch on the grassy hill behind our house.
5) Roll down the hill and laugh together.
6) Have family reading time while the twins are taking their nap.
7) Do an art project & play a game with my kids.
8) Eat a scrumptious dinner together and talk about our day during the meal.
9) Have another dance party & tickle time.
10) Tuck kids into bed.
11) Read a good book until I fall asleep.
That’s the perfect Father’s Day in my mind. Hey, wait a second! That’s pretty much every weekend for our family.
I don’t want gifts because every day with my family is already a gift of inestimable value. I don’t need events to fill my time because I want give as much time as possible to my family. I don’t need sentimental cards because I get bedtime kisses.
Basically, all of the usual Father’s Day traditions seem like a big downgrade from an average day with my family. I don’t want my family to take one day a year to recognize my fatherhood, because I want them to know that I am their father every day. I delight in them. I intend to give them every bit of time, attention, and affection I possibly can until the day I die.