Reflections on Father's Day After a Year of COVID
"My dad has given me the best gift anyone has ever given me. He gave me wings to fly."
So here we are. Restrictions lifting. Masks coming off. People are back to dinners out and going to live events. Dare I say, it is beginning to feel almost normal.
But, the last year certainly did happen. People got very sick and many died. Collectively we were very anxious for a very long time with all the uncertainty. The economy in many sectors was battered and many workers displaced. Our lives constrained by the limits on what we could do, where we could go, and even who we could be with.
How does one think about Father's Day after such an unusual, hopefully once-in-a-lifetime set of experiences?
When I was asked about how things were going, as a father of 8, my usual response was "Well, the ones who should be working are working, the ones who should be in school are in school."
In hindsight, I think that was a little bit too casual. In a time of great stress and challenges, my kids accomplished quite a lot.
One got a promotion and was able to move out into his very first apartment.
One finished her studies and earned a bachelor's degree in graphic arts.
One found a second job to earn more money and bought his first car.
One got his first 'real' job at a high-end home construction company.
One brought home two state championships for his high school, one in soccer, and one in football - and won Super Bowl MVP honors despite never playing before.
And one made a successful transition into high school with remote learning, then partial in-school, all while wearing a mask all day every day, and not getting to enjoy any social activities.
All and all, not too bad. I'm not trying to gloss over the struggles, challenges and setbacks that we all had. They too were very real.
I'm just noticing how much there is for me to appreciate. I'm proud of what my kids were able to accomplish despite all the obstacles that were thrown at them (and all of us) during this last year plus.
This Sunday should make for a very nice Father's Day indeed.
Happy Father's Day!