Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

It's the time of year where kids all over present their dads with school-crafted neckties and celebrate fatherhood with BBQs. Although I outgrew the construction paper tie phase of my life many years ago, and, being 2,300 miles away, am not able to prepare a BBQ dinner for my dad, I want to honour him through a special tribute post.

My dad is one of the most giving, selfless men that I know. I can't say for sure, but I would almost bet that he is spending this Father's Day with his "adopted family" - a group of Congolese refugees who he delivered winter jackets to at Christmas and has since invited into his life. My dad has spent his life seeking out people that he can love through various ways, whether by helping single moms with construction projects around their homes, being an adopted dad at father/son events for boys that have no fathers (which worked out well for him, seeing as how I have only sisters!) or just generally inviting his friends to truly be a part of his life. Ever since my family moved to Edmonton, my dad always sought to make sure we had as many people over for Christmas or Easter dinner as we could possibly find who didn't otherwise have family in town. My dad was a model of what it means to love others, unconditionally.

One of the things that always drove me crazy when I lived with my parents was that it seemed as though the house was always under construction. My dad loves to build and remodel and dream about what could be. While my parents' house (and the house they are building) definitely reaps the benefit of this, there are also houses and camps everywhere that have benefited from this passion. My dad gives his Saturdays (and often evenings) to drive out to camp and build cabins or do renovations. In addition to this, he started a ministry at church called "Tool Time" which provides home renovation help to people who might not otherwise have the talent or money to get projects done on their own.

Although my dad was quite disappointed that I never became an accountant, he's supported my career decisions. One of the best parts of our relationships now is that we've moved from a relationship where "father knows best" to a dialogue where I share what I'm learning and give him input into his own business based on what I am learning and experiencing through my own career and education. I think the best gift my dad could have given me, and both my sisters, is the confidence that we can do anything, and then backing that confidence up by listening to what we are learning and letting us make our own decisions in life.

All in all, I am very truly blessed with the family that I have. I can't even express in words how appreciative I am, and I know that others are not as fortunate. But my dad has not just been a blessing to us - he's given the same love and support to countless others.

Happy Father's Day!

1 comment:

Anna said...

What a sweet post! Your father sounds like an amazing man. My dad is also in finance and he has finally come to turns that I will not be the stock broker that he is. But, hey at least I ended up in business:)

Hope you all had a great Father's Day!