First for all the dads reading this, Happy Fathers Day to you. I think it can be especially hard on dads who's children have autism. We may not get lucky and hear the words Happy Fathers Day from them. We may not get to sit and watch a game or movie with them. I am sure in most cases, we don't get to talk about what is going on in the world around us. We don't get to talk about school, college, or for that matter, maybe we aren't able to really talk to our kids at all. So let me say again to all the dads wishing they could here this, Happy Fathers Day.
But this blog is not about that. This blog is about a person in my life and in my son's lives, who, no matter what has ever gone on, good or bad, has never once not been there. Let me give you a bit of background. Over the years there have been many times in my life where this person and I did not agree on many things. Especially the way I was bringing up my sons. He has had no trouble sharing this with me from time to time. In the beginning, I very rarely voiced an opinion back to him as i never wanted to piss him off or offend him in anyway. Mostly i listened, bit my tongue and tried not to let it get to me.
I had always wanted his approval much the same way i had always wanted and had hoped for my fathers approval. My dad was tough, very set in his ways and to convince him he was wrong about something just never happened. Well for the longest time these 2 men were cut from the same mold. The idea he could be wrong didn't exist. There were times that felt unbearable to deal with but then one day, and i'm not sure what day exactly, things changed. I don't know exactly how it happened or what caused it but i must have earned his respect because the way he talked to me had changed. Now don't get me wrong, since I can remember, this was a person who while very set in his ways, and clearly his ways were different than mine, he had always been there for my family.
If we needed a ride, borrow a car, help around the house, watch the kids, a loan, a meal, or really anything, he was always the first to volunteer somehow. He has typically been the first to step up, offer help or advice, whether i want to hear it or not, but only because he cares. He cares about me, my wife, my sons. I have recently had to call him very late in the night for a favor and without even thinking about it, he got out of bed and helped. Over the years I have come to not just know him but to love him as i did my own father. He has been a big part of all 3 of my son's lives and is there no matter what for each of them. He is very bonded with Aidan. He has taught my sons how to fish, taken them boating, deep sea fishing, to parks, playgrounds, attended and supported their football games regardless of the weather.
He has been a very important part of our lives. His name is John. He is my father inlaw and friend, and known to my kids as Pop Pop. Happy Fathers Day. We all love you.