Maria Landon

www.marialandon.co.uk

Fathers’ Day

on June 14, 2014

daniel 063

Fathers day

Every year on this very special day I find myself writing a few sentences on my facebook status to try and encourage others that no matter what your circumstances or situation, ‘Fathers Day’ can still be a wonderful day to celebrate.  Then after recently transforming  my website into a bloggy styled format I was so excited as I realized I could write loads and loads if I wanted to and share it with the world!  It was then of course that I also realized that although I knew what I wanted to say, I had no idea how to say it. 🙂  We are funny creatures us humanoids.  Anyway as the week wore on and inspiration to write anything other than a shopping list eluded me I started to think that maybe my usual face book status would suffice, after all it isn’t how many words you use to say something, it’s the quality and impact those words may have.  I guess in this fast moving, instant information society we live in the challenge is to communicate as much information in as few words as possible. I still find that rather challenging which of course anyone who reads my face book status will know exactly what I mean. Well I am an author after all.

 

Anyway, back to ‘Fathers’ Day.’ Oh how I know it can be difficult when memories of our Dads are not all they should or could have been.  Yes I have had my share of traumatic experiences regarding my biological dad but I am very well aware that many other people struggle too and for all sorts of reasons.  Dads (and Mums of course) have a huge impact in our lives, their role is invaluable and can shape and mould children into all that he or she will become in the future. Experiences whether good or bad will be remembered, reflected upon and learned from.   I am no expert on these things but just as I write about in my books ‘Daddy’s Little Earner’ Harper Collins (2008) and ‘Escaping Daddy’ Harper Collins (2009) I have learned a great deal from my experiences.  If I can help others by sharing those experiences and all I have learned I will continue to do so.

 

The truth of it is, that Fathers Day can be just as joyful or painful as other celebratory days in the calendar, such as Birthdays, Christmas or any other day come to that. It is just another reminder of what your relationship with your father is or has been like. If you are close and have happy memories and experiences, this will probably be a happy day for you. If you are estranged from your dad or he has died or you have been hurt or neglected by your dad, fathers’ day can often be a cause for more pain and suffering.  As the media bombards us and our shops continually use every trick in the book to get us to hand over our hard earned money on  ‘wonderful dad’ cards and presents etc,  these things can sometimes trigger painful memories again. And all you did was go in the shop for a packet of biscuits!!  Oh my dear friend I know it can be hard and I am truly sorry if memories of your dad cause you anything other than joy.  What I really want to say is that it doesn’t have to be like that, no matter what your relationship with your Dad, it is possible to enjoy this day. It really is I promise!

 

As I said earlier, I had no idea how to say what I wanted to, but God being God showed me so clearly whilst I was out on a beautiful evening walk with Sky (my beautiful dog) yesterday.  On our way home we popped to the local shop which meant coming home along the foot path before we reached the meadow. It was around 7.30 and such a lovely warm evening, it was that time of night where everything seems to be buzzing around your head, no one elses, just yours!!  All sorts of flies and busy insects looking for their last bite of supper or somewhere to settle for the night I imagine: I really must change my hairspray to something less fruity!…… moving on…. At the top of the road I noticed a little family on their bicycles. I guess mum must have been at home clearing up after dinner or putting her feet up before bath and bed time or maybe she was at work, but for whatever reason mum wasn’t there this time. This time it was daddy on his big bike, older brother possibly around 9 or 10 on his boy bike and a little girl maybe 5 or 6 on her pink and purple little bicycle with her gorgeous pink princess helmet. I really wouldn’t have taken much notice but I kept an eye on them in case Sky and I needed to move onto the grass verge. Yes there was a cycle path but it was obvious the little girl wasn’t quite confident enough to be on there yet and I did wonder if they were heading off onto the park to their right.

 

As they drew closer the little girl was in front concentrating really hard, trying not to wobble too much, older brother was in a world of his own, distracted by something to the right of him in the hedge rows and Daddy wasn’t far behind watching over them both protectively like a big bear.  I guess the slight slope in the pavement unnerved the little girl because all of a sudden she began to go a little too fast. It was then that she cried out: ‘Daddy, daddy how do I stop?’ Gently but firmly without a speck of panic in his voice her Daddy replied:  ‘gently squeeze your brakes like daddy showed you sweetheart.’  Jerking a little here and there she came to a stop just before the hedgerow.  ‘Oh daddy she cried, I thought I was going to crash into the hedge, I didn’t know how to stop or how to turn…..but I didn’t daddy, look I stopped just in time.’ As big Daddy cycled up to her we caught each others’ eye and smiled before he looked tenderly at his daughter who in turn looked up gleefully to him. It was just one of those moments where your heart just melts and I knew I had just witnessed something very special. To millions of families, this won’t seem like a big deal, just a normal part of parenting but I knew I had just witnessed a very special bond between father and daughter.  What warmed my heart was the way the little girl had cycled off ahead, a little wobbly and uncertain but fully able to proceed because she knew her daddy was right there behind her.  She didn’t look round once, so certain was she that he was there looking out for her.  When it seemed to be going wrong for her, in her panic, she cried out to him but still she didn’t need to turn round, again so certain was she that he was there.  And he was there, she was never in any real danger, she wasn’t going very fast at all but still she would have been hurt if she fell.  Daddy knew this of course but there was absolutely no panic in his voice as he told his precious daughter exactly what to do.  I guess he knew her better than she knew herself and had enough confidence in her to know that she could do it. I guess he also knew that even if she did fall off, that was still all part of the process of learning to ride your bike.

 

There was a time in my life when witnessing something like this, would have made me feel sad, remembering my awful childhood and how painful it all was. But I no longer do that,  yes I had a quick reminder of how I had to learn to ride a bike in a children’s home because my dad had sold my  first bicycle for beer money before I  had the chance to learn to ride it . Thank fully that doesn’t bother one little bit any more; it’s a memory, a very old one at that.  And so, rather than getting lost in that world of painful memories I chose to keep thinking about this little girl and her family, praising God and thanking God for letting me witness a beautiful moment with these complete strangers. It reminded me how very very important and precious our dads are and how right it is to have a special day to honor and celebrate them.  Thank you God, for good Dads! I only have to look at my sons with my grandchildren and my heart melts, whether they are changing their bottoms, playing in the park or just watching a movie. Whatever they are doing I just love the way they love them and remember every day how incredibly blessed I am with my beautiful family.

 

I know we live in a terribly painful world,  awful horrid things happen and its heart breaking sometimes,  but think about it for a moment,  if we cannot celebrate and enjoy all the good stuff where would be? Please believe me when I say I am not belittling any pain or suffering you may have experienced or are going through.  I have known people who have been absolutely devastated by losing their wonderful dads and it’s heartbreaking to see them in so much pain.  Father’s day can quite often be another reminder and trigger for that grief.  But grief is the price we pay for loving people, if we didn’t love them it wouldn’t hurt to lose them. In the wise old words of  Lord Alfred Tennyson… ‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.’  I am sorry if you are grieving for your dad at this time and I pray that you will soon come to a place of peace, where although you still feel sad and miss your dad, you can smile because of the wonderful times you did share.

 

I guess what I’m trying to say is no matter what your circumstances or situation,  please try to focus on the positives. We have had and still have many wonderful dads out there today. They deserve our love and appreciation and I thank God for them as good role models for the next generation….. and the majority of them are good, praise God!

 

So how did I get to this place of positivity and peace you may wonder?  Well all credit goes to my amazing father in heaven, my big Daddy, my proper Dad I call him. 🙂 I am who I am today because of my relationship with Him. Because he sent his precious son to die for me I can live, and live life to the full.  No one can heal you like Jesus can, he teaches me how to forgive, to let go of the past and to look forward, he teaches me about who I am and all that I can be through Him.  No matter how many times I have pushed him away he has always been right beside me.  Just like the little girls daddy in the story above God has been there through every journey,  he always answers when I cry out to Him and he always comes alongside me whenever I need Him.  And just like that little girl I have come to trust that no matter how wobbly I may be on my journey through life, He will always be there. He is the reason I can forgive,  he is the reason I can trust again, the reason that even if I fall off that bike, I can get straight back on it, looking forward, smiling gleefully, appreciating all that is good in this world. He is the reason I can leave all the bad stuff behind me and get on with my life as He watches over me like that big protective bear.

Happy Fathers Day God…… now you really are the Best!

For your personal letter from God please follow this link   My Dear Child

 

 

 

 

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