Friday, June 19, 2015

I am Terrible at Father's Day

This post is sponsored by Minute Maid as part of their #DoinGood campaign. The give-away is now closed and the $250 gift card has been awarded!

I am terrible at Father's Day. I never know what to get my husband and the ideas I have for my father are borderline demented. For example, I was very disappointed that the three foot tall garden gnomes are no longer available at my local retailer, as that would have been perfect for my dad. Because everyone wants an enormous garden gnome, right? Yes, of course they do.

I think one of the reasons I'm so bad at Father's Day is that my husband is a pretty self-sufficient guy, who usually says he doesn't need anything when asked. He also hates to spend money. These things combined make it very hard to know what to get for him. So we have to get creative and that's usually where we fail. I guess I could be like: "Happy Father's Day! Here is a pack of undershirts I got you at Costco because you're a wonderful dad and I noticed your old ones were fraying because our dryer eats things. God bless!"

That seems insufficient.

Let's revisit a couple of lovely items my husband has gotten for Father's Day in the past:
  • Last year, Mini insisted on buying him a 3-pack of deodorant. He was like: "Thanks?" and then said he actually only needed one. She gently stroked his back and said: "No, three."
  • Five years ago, the children were torn between buying him adult diapers and mind control, but ultimately got bored with the conversation and got him nothing.
  • In 2012, Mini drew him a picture of a phallic butterfly and provided me the gift of a hearty laugh at his discomfort.
Given that this man works harder than any person I've ever met to take care of this family, he really deserves better. I've spent a lot of time thinking and writing about Mother's Day and how we all seem to get it wrong. Maybe my basic approach to Father's Day is all wrong, too.

The key to Mother's Day for me was to re-frame what it was really about. It's certainly not about greeting cards or lame jewelry bought in a strip mall. It's about your family showing you that they get it; that they see how hard you work every day to take care of them and be there for them.

I think this year, my husband will get a few gifts but what he'll really be receive from his family is the truth. This life that we've built together over the past 20 years is nothing that we expected. It's simultaneously a total goat rodeo and better than anything I could have imagined. I don't say enough about how grateful I am for all that he does, in large part because we don't say enough period. Life is too crazy and by the time there's a quiet minute, we're both exhausted.

None of it works without him. None of it would be any fun without him. None of us can imagine a world where he's not always there for us, the biggest, baddest cowboy in our ridiculous goat rodeo. There is no one that could do what he does for us and there is no way we could love him more.

This post is sponsored by Minute Maid as part of their awesome #DoinGood campaign. Parents struggle but they are doing so much better than they think. If you'd like to be in the running for a $250 Visa Gift card, tell me about your family or about a dad you know who is doing a better job than he might think. Post a comment for a chance to win a $250 Visa gift card to continue “Doin’ Good” with your kids!

Now watch this video, and try not to cry.



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