Meaning in Father’s Day: Support Your Loved Ones
Happy Father’s Day to all you fellow dads out there. Being a father comes with responsibility, challenges, fun times, hard times, and lots of familial love. Having lost my daughter Riley Marie to a Congenital Heart Defect earlier this year, for me, Father’s Day is forever changed.
A couple weeks ago I saw an ad put out by NBC TODAY Parents stating they were putting together a Father’s Day story and a video for parents who have lost children. They were asking for short clips of dads with their lost child. I had made it my mission to have as many pictures and videos of my daughter Riley as I could. My daughter was born with a Congenital Heart Defect and I wanted to capture every moment with her whether we had a happy ending or not. After a long, exhausting night reliving all of those memories, I submitted a video. While I may wish circumstances were different, the video I submitted with Riley was chosen for the NBC TODAY story and I wanted to share it with other families and dad’s out there.
As Father’s Day approached this year, you can imagine, I’ve had a lot of mixed emotions. Grief is a process. It has no end date, and while I’m so happy to be a dad to my amazing son, it’s impossible to not think about what I could be doing with my daughter right now; she was a daddy’s girl through and through. To say I was wrapped around her finger is an understatement.
Take a minute to reflect on your own father today and check out this story where you can see the video clip I submitted along with those submitted by other fathers. Remember to touch base with your own dad today or remember what he was like if he has passed on.
I’d like to thank my employer for being so supportive of those who depend on great jobs to support their families. My team has helped through fundraising at the Congenital Heart Walk to support my daughter while she was alive and I continue to feel the support of my colleagues who have become like family.
For all you dads, expecting dads, those who want to be a dad, and to others that may have lost a child or father: The main advice I can give is to make the most of every opportunity to spend quality time with your children and cherish those moments.
Happy Father’s Day Everyone!