This Sunday is Father’s Day and it’s also the second anniversary of the day my other passed away. When I was on the airplane on my way to my mother’s bedside the day she died two years ago, I wrote a post about giving our parents our time, not stuff. Here’s that post. I truly believe that we benefit, as do our parents, when we make an effort to spend time with them, especially on holidays. It’s a much better gift than a tie or after shave!
Father’s Day is Sunday and that always makes me want to encourage you not to give gifts that will become clutter. I think this is particularly true of gifts to parents, who may have an especially hard time letting go of items you give them.
I’ve mentioned before that you can give clutter-free gifts like fresh flowers, restaurant gift certificates, or coupons for services. But today I’m thinking about how wonderful it is to give the gift of time to a parent.
I haven’t lived within a thousand miles from my parents since I was 17 and left for college. I’m not sure I’ve spent Father’s Day with my father since 1980. But this year I’ll be there. It wasn’t intentional. My mother has been hospitalized and I’m rushing there to be by her bedside. The bright spot of that is that I’ll be with my 84-year-old father on Father’s Day this year.
Here’s a selfie I took of my dad, Gene Adams, and me at a basketball game last year. He’s a great guy.
Facing the prospect of losing my mother makes me wish I had more often given my parents the gift of time together. Throughout my adult years, I paid at least an annual visit to my parents. As they became elderly, I upped that to twice a year. This is my third visit this year and I have two more scheduled.
If you have the opportunity to spend more time with your parents than you’re currently spending, I urge you to consider scheduling regular outings (or just quiet visits) together while you can. I’d be willing to bet that they’ll be more special to your parent than any physical item you could give them.