My First Fatherless Father’s Day

Dad recently died due to complication from muscular dystrophy, so it’s my first fatherless Father’s Day. I will still celebrate my amazing husband in his role as Father to my own children, but I will not have my own Father present this year. 

Ouch. That hurts. 

So, Dad, in honor of your first Father’s Day with our Heavenly Father, here are some thoughts about what you have taught me in life.

Everything comes down to love. 

It reminds me of my all-time favorite quote about love from “Yours, Mine, and Ours” (1968) starring Lucille Ball and Henry Fonda. As Frank (Fonda) is escorting Helen (Ball) into the car to deliver their first child together (bringing the kid total up to 19), Frank tells Helen’s teenage daughter Colleen all about love. [quote]”It’s giving life that counts. Until you’re ready for it, all the rest is just a big fraud. All the crazy haircuts in the world won’t keep it turning. Life isn’t a love in, it’s the dishes and the orthodontist and the shoe repairman and … ground round instead of roast beef. And I’ll tell you something else: it isn’t going to a bed with a man that proves you’re in love with him; it’s getting up in the morning and facing the drab, miserable, wonderful everyday world with him that counts. “[/quote] Love is a choice. It’s choosing to invest time in those you love, oftentimes at the expense of oneself. In looking back on my life with Dad, I am overwhelmed by the number of times he chose us. 

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He chose us when he paid tuition.

He chose us when he attended dance recitals.

He chose us when he cheered on Little League.

He chose us when he helped coach soccer teams.

He chose us when he spent his days off work teaching us math and science.

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He chose us when he planted our favorite veggies in the garden.

He chose us when he taught us how to ride a bike and drive a car.

He chose us when he spent extra time outside in the heat so we could learn how to mow the lawn.

He chose us when he killed snakes and roaches and all things we feared.

He chose to repair our popped lines and retrieve hooks from trees instead of taking a fishing trip with his buddies.

He chose to sit next to us while we cried over math homework instead of kicking back with a beer to watch the game.

He chose to wait up for us on nights we were away from home instead of catching some extra shut eye. 

He chose us. 

Even when he didn’t like the choice, or maybe the choice brought his disability to light and made him self-conscious, we didn’t know.

Because he always VALIANTLY chose us. 

He is our hero because he chose us. 

Even in death, he chose to make everything as easy as possible for us. 

So, Daddies, choose your children.

Choose your wife.

Over and over again.

At the end of your life, you are left with the choices you’ve made. Make them good ones.

Sarah Keating
Sarah is a 30-something mom of four children under six and wife to her high-school sweetheart. She returned to Acadiana two years ago following her husband’s completion of medical school and residency in Shreveport. After the move, Sarah switched gears from full-time pediatric speech-language pathologist and working mom to full-time stay-at-home mom to her brood. Her current hobbies include “speech-therapizing” her children, re-reading the Outlander series, catching up on her Netflix queue after the kids go to bed, completing XHIT videos at naptime, and taking her medication every morning. She loves and respects the sacredness of motherhood, but sometimes you just have to let go and laugh it out. Motherhood has been the most humbling, and empowering journey she has experienced.


  1. Wow Sara that’ is so beautiful I really enjoyed reading that ,It really touch my Heart,My Buddy is watching over u and your family and he is very proud of u as am I ,Love you guys ❤️JUDY

  2. Sara, I can only imagine the LOVE that you were Blessed to receive in your 30-something years from your Dad. I too have had a Fatherless Father’s Day for the past four years…..unfortunately, as the years go by, it doesn’t get easier.
    However, I was Blessed beyond measure to cross paths with your Father….one, twelve hour plus shift and “your Dad” made an enormous impact on my life. One that my 18 years of Nursing never seen coming. I will be forever grateful to “your Dad” and your Mom for making me see what I was able to, on that one GRATEFUL day!
    May God continue to Bless you and your family….Always&Forever ✝️
    Much Love,
    Angel Kidder.

  3. How proud must Daddy be with your beautiful tribute to him. Unconditional love was his specialty and we were his treasures. How blessed are we!?! Thank you for using God’s gifts so eloquently! Mama loves you!

  4. Wow Sarah…that is one of THE MOST BEAUTIFUL tributes I have ever had the honor of reading! Thanks for including your many readers in what you’ve experienced as one of the most loving parents a person could ever hope to have in their lifetime! Your dad was always a beautiful human being and I know your Nanny Lisa always looked up to him! God Bless You babe and keep on sharing your wonderful gift!❤

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