From birth to death and every step in between, the greatest occurrences in any life are often preceded by a moment. Once a year the world dedicates 1440 of its moments to acknowledge its fathers, and once a year the men, defined by the moment that they decided to abandon their child or children, ruminate over what went wrong. What do these fathers miss out on? How will they ever know?
If you talk to anyone who grew up without their father, or a father figure, you will learn that the father who was absent from their lives missed the moments where his words and acts of encouragement could have prevented them from becoming a teenaged parent. According to statistics, being raised without one’s father raises the risk of teen pregnancy. If he’s left his son, this father missed the chance explain through words and action just why education is important, or to prevent that young man from seeking acceptance and his identity from those who would chose to exploit rather than exalt his child to that boy’s true potential. Prisons are filled with wasted talent, potential and people in pain. 70% of inmates in juvenile prisons come from fatherless homes.
An absent father also missed the moments of experiencing and guiding the steps of the child that graduated from college, won a Grammy Award, successfully litigated a legal case, performed open heart surgery or got married; had his or her first child and pondered, what kind of father would willingly miss any of these moments.
So if Father’s Day approaches and you are contemplating the moment when things went terribly wrong, stop and start all over again! Witness the joy of the fathers around you and realize that, in an instant, circumstances do change. Pick up the phone; send a card or turn on your Skype. Begin with “I’m sorry. I love you”. Push past the guilt and shame, and realize that whether you’ve been absent for a day or more than a decade, it’s never too late to begin becoming the best father that you can. Whenever you start, it will be the moment that matters most.- -Kobie Brown