Happy Father’s Day to the Neglected Warrior

Happy Father’s Day to the Neglected Warrior

Growing up, my mother was always at the forefront as the caregiver. She was the one that schlepped me around to Hebrew school, ballet, and voice lessons. My father, on the other hand, worked. I remember my dad’s presence at dinner and on the weekends. After he came home from work, he would tuck himself away in his home office and continue to work as I watched television or finished my homework. He certainly wasn’t a neglectful father, he was just always working. And that is what I thought fathers did.

As I look back, I think of him as the neglected warrior. He was the one responsible for supporting our family, a responsibility he took very seriously. He was also the homework checker and the “final say” person. And it is very possible that he did not get his fair share of “thank you” along the way. When I was in college, my computer printer broke down at 10pm the night before my paper was due. Did I take him for granted when he drove in to Boston to help me fix it? He didn’t stand in my way when I announced that I wanted to be an actress, instead he showed up for every show I did. (Even sat through several performances of Hair and embarrassingly looked away when the nude scene came.) He thankfully calmed my mother down when I came home freshman year with my nose pierced!

My father died when I was 26 years old, a very quick sudden death. He never got to see my yoga studio, or even meet my husband or children. But as I look at my life and around at the yoga center I built, I see him in everything I do. He was a lawyer and kept EVERY document and receipt as a paper trail “in case” something happened with the computer, just as I do. My father’s office had piles of papers that seemed like one big mess, but he insisted he knew what was in those piles and that it was his own way of being organized, just as I do. He was meticulous with his work and always kept his client’s best interest in mind, just as I do. Even though he never stepped foot in the PYC, he is there. In his own quiet way, my dad’s values and integrity shaped who I am today.

Father’s day is a wonderful opportunity to say thank you and “I love you” to our co-creators who may be more of the stage manager in our lives then the leading character.

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