It was Father's Day last Sunday.
Why is it that the days before every celebration day are worse than the actual day itself?
For the past 2.5 years, I've worked myself into a state of despondency in the days before birthdays, Easter, Christmas, mother's day or father's day, and of course, the sadiversary, only to be OK-ish on the day itself. Good even.
...and so it was this time.
Of course, there were some annoyances - I was annoyed that H's teacher had made things that clearly stated "Dad" on them and H insisted on filling it in because "that's what everyone else was doing". ...except of course for the other child in his class whose father died in 2010. (Meanwhile, I was mindful that I have a first-timer for a fatherless father's day in my classroom and we chatted about what *she* wanted to do over what I'd had organised for the rest of the class.)
But this time, THIS father's day, I had a bit of a plan to get through the day.....
When I discovered that the kitchy solar light the kids had put on the grave back in March had been removed (by whom, we don't know), I had plans to replace it with another (named) one. .....and as father's day drew near, it seemed be a fitting activity for a day that would be sad anyway.
So out we trotted to the cemetery ... only to have a middle-aged man splash a beer onto the ground right next to us as we were hammering the little lamp-stands into the ground, so we got to sit with stinky beer annoying the ants two graves over...... shortly followed by a middle-aged woman who Went Out Of Her Way to Step On Greg's Grave because apparently the entire 5 acre lawn plot was so small she had no other way to walk to her family's grave.O.o
(People are RUDE..... add that to the "annoyances"list ...... but then again, I realise that
Anyway, after that, we went out for pancakes and milkshakes which made everything OK .... almost celebratory. ...and then dinner at Mum and Dad's which was both delicious and accompanied by good humour.
....only to have to drive past a very recent car accident on the way home.
We sat at the traffic lights for a full 3 minutes, waiting for the light to change, while the children stared, wide-eyed, at the fire engine, tow trucks, ambulances and wondered aloud whether anybody had been killed; debating whether the doors of the T-boned car were destroyed so badly that the occupant would have died on impact.
Meanwhile silent tears slipped down my cheeks and prayers to that God I don't believe in, left my lips. I fervently hoped that the person driving the car was able to go home to their father ... or that the father driving the car was able to go home to his children.
I really hope he did: Happy Father's Day.