It’s never too late to commemorate Father’s Day

Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 25, 2000

During my tenure here, readers will likely notice I often write about my family.

Friday, June 23, 2000

During my tenure here, readers will likely notice I often write about my family. While their eccentricities and occasional episodes of insanity have provided a wealth of memories and experiences from which I can draw, the real reason I write about my family is quite simple. They are the most important people in my life.

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So when those family-honoring-type holidays roll around, I generally take readers for a stroll down the Schelinder memory lane. Unfortunately, I didn’t have my walking shoes on last week, and therefore, didn’t write a Father’s Day tribute to my Papa Bear (and all fathers, for that matter).

But spending last Sunday with him reminded me just how special fathers are and how lucky am I to have one of the greatest there ever was.

I’m fortunate to have a father who has stuck by my mother’s side for 38 years. Of course, like any marriage that spans decades, there were arguments between the two that caused me to want leave the house for a while, but Bud and Ruth Anne always made up because they are the perfect pair. They even wear matching sweatshirts, jackets, ect. when they go on their gambling trips; it’s adorable.

Taking the "For better or for worse" part of the wedding vows seriously is one of the reasons why I respect my father so much. There are countless other reasons.

One thing that really bothers me about some other fathers I have met is their attitude toward child rearing. It drives me nuts when I hear a father say, "My wife is busy, so I have to baby-sit." Baby-sitting is watching someone else’s kids. Looking after your own kids is simply an aspect of being a parent.

Because my father was the main breadwinner in the family, it was my mother who stayed home when one of my siblings or I got sick. But my father never looked upon it as a chore when he did stay home with us while my mother went to ceramics classes or the like. And because he was often laid off in the coldest winter months, he stayed with us when we were off for Christmas break. Unlike my mother, he let us eat lots of cookies – in the living room, too. What a guy.

Every little girl who has ever stood on her daddy’s feet learning how to dance dreams of marrying a guy just like dad. Well, my father never taught me how to dance – he did teach me how to bait a hook – but I’d have to say I’d be lucky to find a guy who measures up to my dear ol’ dad.

So here’s a week-late tribute to all fathers and father figures. There are many great men out there, but the title of world’s greatest dad is already taken. And since that title has been held by the same man for as long as I can remember, I don’t think the honor will be relinquished too soon. But please, men, don’t stop aspiring to that level.

Shawnda Schelinder’s column appears weekly