Sunday, June 15, 2014

Growing Up Dads

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads, and those who fill those shoes. Special thanks to all single Moms and those who mentor and support kids who do not have present Dads. This is a picture of my son with his Dad before the divorce.

I remember being so angry that my ex was not involved in his kids lives or paying child support for years. I wrote and posted this song, "Don't be a Dead Beat" last year. Sorry that relationships with writers can be a blessing or a curse. But since I aired the dirty laundry then, I am happy to report that he has been paying child support for over six months now and has seen his kids three times this past year! Compared to my Dad and many who are actively involved, there is still major room for growth. But I have learned that when we focus on the good, it can then increase.

Many boys and girls become Dads and Moms before they are ready for the full responsibility. Maybe they did not have an example and positive role model of how to be an active and encouraging Dad/Mom, or they just lose their way for a time in selfishness, addiction and negative choices that take them so far down the wrong path that they struggle to find their way. Watching Oprah Winfrey's series on single Moms and Dads, what I realized is that many Dads become defeated and give up because they feel like failures and act in that belief. Especially when there is a strong Mom involved, and we do become Mamma Bears to protect our children, always reminding them of how they fall short.

So today, I want to thank all of the imperfectly perfect Dads and the Father of my children, for the times when you have been present and have supported your kids. To all of the Dads and Moms who are still growing up... Today is a new day! You have a choice, to be there for your kids. We ALL fall short and need grace. We need to be reminded of who God made us to be. Life is short. Make the time to show your kids you love them. Forgive your Dad for what he couldn't do and choose to do better.

I am thankful for the time I had with my Dad. Bob Goebel was an awesome Father! I have this framed picture below of a rainbow, because he was the one who taught me to "Look for the rainbow" through every storm, and never give up. While I was in college, my dad was battling cancer. One day after a weekend visit at home, I found this note inside a heart that my Dad had written on one of the inside pages of my binder. Losing him when I was 22, I have treasured this piece of paper. And I added this fortune cookie note in the frame, "Character matters. Leadership descends from character." My Dad was a true leader, with integrity and character. He was not perfect, but he was always present, seeking God and planning fun adventures for our family. I had no idea then that he would be gone too soon. I miss him so much!

Every little thing that Dads do to say and show, "I love you" matters! It is not about the amount of money you spend. It is showing that you care. Do not give up! Do what you can. Live forgive and be present, today. We will get through the growing pains. Every experience teaches us the lessons we need to learn to move forward and be our very best with each new day.
Happy Growing Family Day!