By Village of Wilson Mayor Arthur Lawson
With Father’s Day fast approaching, I wanted to take a moment to share this message of thanks. Today, fatherhood is sometimes drily described as a craft or an occupation, something which competes with career or outside pursuits for time and attention. In our era of new pressures and strains on families, we often forget just what it is that is special about fatherhood.
Fatherhood is walking the floor at midnight with a sick baby that cannot sleep; being there from T-ball to touchdown cheering on your child; helping with the endless amount of homework while you are now working from home, repairing a bicycle wheel for the umpteenth time knowing that it won’t last more than the afternoon; and being there for all the broken hearts your child will have. Fatherhood is holding tight when all else seems to be falling apart; and fatherhood is letting go when it is time to part. Fatherhood is long hours at the family-owned business; behind the wheel of a tractor at the family farm; or doing a six-month military tour of duty. In short, fatherhood is giving one’s all, from a child’s first day of life on, from the break of day to its end – on the job, in the household, but, most of all, in the heart.
Fatherhood is not only a part of life, but a path in life that has, in every generation, the power to create and renew. From the vantage point of believing in his children, a father sees the future and dedicates himself to doing whatever is necessary to keep his children on a path of success. No father performs any of these tasks with thought of thanks or reward. The things that gratify him most are those that represent success in what he has labored to impart to his children: strength of character and conviction, love of family and country, a sense of right and wrong, and, above all, a spirit of thanksgiving for the generous gift of life itself.
Coach Jim Valvano (aka Jimmy V, an American college basketball player, coach and broadcaster) said it best when he stated, “My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person. He believed in me.”
Father’s spend years of work, worry, and losing many nights of sleep, because they believe in their children and it’s all worth those few fleeting moments you witness your child get their first base hit, fix their own bicycle, get married, and walk across that graduation stage with a college degree. On this day for fathers, all of us have a special opportunity to say thanks to our dads for their selflessness and devotion. Happy Father’s Day!
Stay healthy – stay safe.