Father’s Day is Sunday, June 17. Did you know? Of course you did. There are advertisements everywhere, newspapers, magazines, television, the internet, stores have signs everywhere suggesting items as the perfect Father’s Day gift.
What do you do if you’re a widow, your children’s father is no longer with you? What do you do to celebrate him and the day? How do you and your children observe the day?
There is no one “right” answer, every widow, every child does what is right for them. If you’re floundering, here are six ideas for you.
1. Plant something in his honor. It can be something to grow for years, a tree, a rose bush, his favorite perennial plant. It can be something for this season only, a plant that will produce flowers to be cut for your home, vegetables or fruit, something that will honor him. While it’s late in the season, I will be planting tomato plants this year. They won’t be in a garden, but in containers next to my front porch. He will be a part of the planting in multiple ways.
2. Celebrate the fathers in your family who are still living. I have been known to buy cards for my sons and son-in-law and send them. After all, they are the fathers of my grandchildren. I do wish them a happy Father’s Day online and send them a text. You could include your own father and father-in-law if they are still living, mine aren’t. You can also include others, your siblings, siblings-in-law, cousins, uncles, your well wishes can extend as far as you want.
3. Share the love. Buy the cards you enjoy, write a short note of well wishing, and donate them to a nursing home, hospital, or hospice. Check with the facility first to be sure they are on board with delivering the cards, and to determine how many you need.
4. Start a memory book for your grandchildren. A journal with pictures and stories about their grandfather to help them know him. If they are old enough, ask your grandchildren to tell you about a memory they have of their grandfather.
5. Write a short piece about a father-child moment between your husband and your child. If you have multiple children you can write one involving all of the children, as well as a specific time for each child. These don’t have to be huge life-changing moments, just a snippet in time involving the child and father. For one of my son’s there is the time he (son, age 4) cracked the back window of the pickup. You can put several stories together in a little book, or just send each child the story involving them.
6. Donate flowers, or a plant to your church in his honor.
I hope these ideas help you take the stress off the day and you’re able to enjoy your memories of him as a dad on this day.
What do you do to observe/celebrate Father’s day?
Did you have a tradition for the day when he was here?
Have you shared memories of him as a dad when your children were very young with them?
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