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Challenge: Perfectly Imperfect Parenting

Learning Gratitude through Grief

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There are parents. And, then there are moms and dads.

Some parents are mediocre.

They are the parents that gave you DNA and life.

Sometimes their involvement stopped there.

Some parents go in and out of their children’s lives. Sometimes with long periods of absence.

They may stop at a game a season or drop off a toy on Christmas.

Some parents are good parents. They do the best they can with what they have.

They may have made mistakes in the past but they do the absolute best they can in the current.

They’re at every holiday. Now.

They’re at every celebration. Now.

They’re present. Now.

They show effort.

My dad was eventually a good parent. While he missed most of my childhood he made every effort to make up for lost times in my adulthood.

From age 16 on he didn’t miss a holiday or a birthday or a baby shower or graduation. Every big and small event he was there. Every single Sunday I picked him up for dinner.

And, some parents are Moms and Dads. They’re literal angels on earth. People who are in your life as intricate parts of your every day life in every way. From day one. Ya know, like “that’s my mom” and “I need to call my dad”.

I’m 33 and I go to my mom’s house every day. We eat dinner there every night. There isn’t a single part of my life that is not touched by my mom’s presence in some way.

And, I didn’t really realize how much I was (unknowingly) taking that for granted. Until my close friend suddenly lost her there for everything, I mean everything, Dad.

The past few months of our conversations and watching her grief has been heart breaking. And, eye opening.

Things that seem so basic: the kids’ games, Sunday dinners, Easter egg hunts.... things that we take advantage of in our daily life. When a parent/grandparent is (just magically always) there for these moments and days we tend to forget just how incredibly lucky we are.

How blessed we are.

I have lost a parent. 4-years later there are still moments it doesn’t feel real.

But, I have not (yet) lost half my heart. I have not lost that parent who is there for every single thing. I cannot imagine that grief. That loss. That empty feeling.

To those who post your heart and heartbreaking memories - thank you.

Thank you for reminding us how short and fragile life is.

Thank you for sharing your grief and by doing so reminding us to be present and thankful. For everything both big and small. ❤️

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