Father’s Day was first celebrated in 1910 in Spokane, Washington after Sonora Smart Dodd, one of six children raised by a widower, voiced her opinion, and raised support for her idea to recognize male parents and have a day equivalent to Mother’s Day, which was established in 1870. Several years later in 1924, Father’s Day gained worldwide recognition and began being celebrated due to her efforts.
On this day, families come together to recognize and show their love and appreciation to fathers. Families strive to set them apart and thank them. Father’s Day is a day to express gratitude for their unwavering support, love, guidance, strength, and their paternal role. Father’s Day is not solely dedicated to dads. A grandfather, stepdad, uncle, or any male that plays a paternal role is to be celebrated!
The latest US Census showed that 33% of US kids grow up without their biological father in their lives. This means that there are millions of kids that view Father’s Day as a source of pain rather than celebration. Father’s Day can also be a painful reminder to those who have lost their father due to sickness, a tragic accident, or any other unexpected loss.
Think about the qualities that make a father great. A father is honest, humble, responsible, a provider and protector, loves selflessly, an encourager, strong supporter, a good listener, shares quality time, a patient teacher, and a strong leader. These qualities are qualities that could describe any male role model in your life, not just a father. This could be a grandpa that never missed a ballgame, an uncle who stepped in for a father/daughter dance, an older brother who was always there to listen and guide you, a friend’s dad that let you share a “Donuts with Dad” breakfast.
All of these are examples of powerful male role models that should be celebrated and cherished. Let this be a reminder to reframe this day to honor all the men who serve as a pillar of strength for you or to remember and honor a lost father figure.
So, happy Father’s Day to all of the Dads, Grandfathers, Stepdads, uncles, brothers, and all of those who are our pillars of strength!
– Sarah Driskell