The word “father” is identified with love, guidance and support. That kind of love does not fade after our fathers die…in fact, our affection flourishes as we mature.
Special days like Father’s Day tend to be more difficult for the fatherless. The incessant marketing campaigns leading up to the day illuminates the absence of him, resulting in grief that is just as fresh as if the death occurred yesterday. For someone grieving their father the entire month of June is a series of ups and downs. When your father is alive and well, you tend not to notice all the commercial marketing for Father's Day. Greeting cards, the perfect gift, dinner plans, even jokes about buying that perfect necktie or pajamas for dad. However, when your father is no longer around the perpetual marketing campaigns combined with the nagging spam in your inbox mentioning Father's Day can feel like tiny daggers stabbing your heart.
For the entire month of June you have thoughts like the following: Hey Bed Bath and Beyond, do you have the perfect gift for the deceased dad? Or…What greeting card did you last give him? Was it funny, serious, or too mushy? Did he keep it? Did you tell him how much you love and appreciate him? Did you do enough?
Losing your father can be a devastating life changing experience, especially if you were close to him. Each year will have occasions where the loss feels enormous, such as his birthday or Father’s Day. Just because he has passed does not mean you stop celebrating dad on Father’s Day.
Below are some suggestions on how to celebrate father’s day when your dad is no longer physically present.