The meaning of Father’s Day (like Mother’s Day) changes over the years.  When you are young it’s all about your Dad and you might observe the day by making him a handmade card and of course your Mom pays for a gift which might be a shirt, tie or something of the like.  It’s a big barbeque day where he will usually do the grilling although it’s your Mother who has done most of the work.

As you get to your teenage years it’s time to purchase a real card and gift although again Mom often takes on the responsibility and all you do is sign the card.  Maybe you and Dad go to a baseball game together or the entire family heads too an amusement park.  Since he is getting older his real gift might be a day to do nothing or hang out at the beach.

This all changes once you become a Father because now there are two of you celebrating the day and unfortunately you may not be together.  Your family has plans for you which are very different from what you would be doing with your Dad.  Now you are the one receiving the handmade card and shirt and you are also the one flipping burgers if the family comes over…hopefully your own Father is there.

Of course the years go by and things change.  Your kids might have a Little League game which means plans evolve around that.  It’s hard to get everyone together as your siblings don’t live close by and their kids have events during the day.  You might have to catch up with your own Father on a different day and take him out to breakfast or lunch.

The real change comes when your Dad passes away and your son is now a Father.  The day just doesn’t mean the same and you reflect on all those times when he was the center of attention.  Now you want to celebrate your son being a Dad and hopefully you can share the day with him.  But you can sure I’ll be thinking about my father and father-in-law who I dearly miss.

My son Brandon and Jill with sons Carter and Luca
My son Brandon and Jill with sons Carter and Luca


Happy Father’s Day to all the good Dads out there.  I hope the shirt fits.

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Gallery Credit: Meg Dowdy