Today is another American holiday. Am I the only one who has noticed that they seem to come every 30 days or so, demanding that we buy a card or a gift? I love to celebrate even the smallest victories. I was blessed with a wonderful father. But I must admit that holidays can be a bit sad for all of us. Some have buried their fathers, while others did not know their fathers for an assortment of reasons. Some fathers were cold, mean, distant, or abusive in other ways. Today I hope that you can find the good qualities in your father. Celebrate his positive qualities. If you are reading this message, your parents believed in life! If nothing else, praise Dad for the fact that you can see, hear, and feel.
I have already received emails and calls from people who hate Father’s Day. As the founder of a large organization of professional women, my phone is always ringing. Helping women is like a religion for us. Our by-laws state that we assist talented women in raising money, writing business plans, and achieving lofty goals. We are successful in that regard. But we spend far too much time dealing with the social issues of unsuspecting women. Domestic violence and other forms of violence against women is the best kept secret. The survivors of abusive relationships look like your noble nurse, tolerant teacher, and lovely lawyer.
Personally, I have had a hectic week of summer consulting assignments and the last week of school for my teen-agers. In the next seven days I have a 7 day business trip across the country. Summers are just too busy. Although sleepy and overworked, our volunteers spent all day yesterday moving and hauling. We had two families of women and children who needed furniture and other household items, due to impromptu moves from abusive husbands. These women have beautiful homes, but are driven out by verbal and physical violence. This is how we spend many holidays. Our husbands get tired of watching us run out of the door during dinner to help women in need.
I carried my children in ‘snuggly-style’ carriers, nursed them in one arm and had a medical book in another. Being a mother has not stopped me from pursuing my goals. The 3 T’s have spent many days and evenings accompanying our advocates to the beautiful safe house that our organization built. Now our eldest is old enough to drive us to perform our service projects. My heart is really heavy today as many families are hurting emotionally and physically. Please find some time to volunteer with your religious or civic group. If we all work together, we can help people transform crises into opportunities. We can all turn our next trial into a triumph.