Sunday, June 18, 2017

Neglecting My Dad on Father's Day

I don't remember much about Father's Day when I was a kid. I had to really rack my brain because my dad is great. I'm sure we did something for him. His birthday is June 24th so it's like the whole month is dedicated to my dad. And then I remembered.

They sent us away (that one time) for Father's Day!

My sister and I used to go to with my grandparents to their cabin in Tionesta, PA. I'll point out in advance that my memories are vague and most probably skewed by how horrible the whole experience was for me. But it seems like they sent us there for two weeks every summer. And once we were definitely there for Father's Day. 

I remember this because we had to call home using the pay phone at the Whig Hill store. It was a big deal. Grandma had to dial seventy-five numbers (calling cards were so cool) and she was not a technologically adept person. Then it was like say-what-you-need-to-say because this calling card has to last all summer. The pay phone was in a parking lot. Also, it always rained for our entire time in Tionesta unless it was a burning hot drought. 

We called home on Saturday. We each spoke to both parents. Sunday rolled around, Father's Day, and we determined that we didn't need to call two days in a row. "We just called yesterday," my sister or maybe grandma said. "He won't mind."

This was probably because we never did anything for the poor guy on Father's Day. 

He came to pick us up from the cabin the next week or whatever interval they had deemed acceptable to leave us with no indoor plumbing. He was miffed that we didn't even call for his special holiday. I didn't make him a macaroni necklace or even a card. I let it go uncelebrated. 

When my daughter was born, my dad lost Father's Day entirely. "Are you coming to see me on Sunday," he'd say. 

Teasing me I'm sure.

"You're not the dad anymore," I'd tell him. "You're the pappy."

The pappy got a Father's Day present about three weeks ago and assurances that we probably wouldn't see him again until his birthday. 

Seeing that in print makes me feel sort of bad. So I hope he will accept this as a Father's Day card (because I forgot to actually mail a real one in time). 

Mom, please show this to Dad. It is his very special Father's Day Card.
Happy Father's Day to all! I hope your kids do something special for you today. Even if they do have to call from a payphone.