June 20, 2015

Father's Day

If it weren't for Heath being the man he is, three of my four children would have grown up without ever knowing and understanding the love of a father. That may seem like a drastic claim, but it is all truth. 

I met with a great friend from high school this week. As the kids were playing, she and I were talking, catching up a bit. 

And, in the midst of it all, she said, "What you and Heath are doing with these kids is amazing... Loving someone else's child is a huge calling."

I forget sometimes that these kiddos weren't born to me. The memories mesh. Holden's birth story blurs into my other childrens'. Each of them are a specific love story that I cherish, but I also don't dwell on the details. 

In the details, however, it's easy to forget how much Heath has given up for us. He is the definition of selfless. And, to say he has loved all of us through some ugly moments is the biggest understatement I can make. 

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 25 million children, or one in every three in America, are growing up without a father. There are no statistics that recount the amount of children who have a father physically there, but not emotionally present. 

I bet that is a scary statistic that none of us want to grapple with. 

"In a study examining father involvement with 134 children of adolescent mothers over the first 10 years of life, researchers found that father-child contact was associated with better socio-emotional and academic functioning. The results indicated that children with more involved fathers experienced fewer behavioral problems and scored higher on reading achievement. This study showed the significance of the role of fathers in the lives of at-risk children, even in case of nonresident fathers." (source: http://www.fatherhood.org)

I have seen this. With my children. With my own eyes. 

This year on Father's Day, think of ways you can help change a child's life. Be a mentor, share you time... There are children in your community, neighborhood, and church who need to see the love of your family - even if it is just for a dinner. 

If you are the financial giving type, I highly suggest you visit http://www.thementoringproject.org and join their #dontbuythetie movement. 

I am blessed to have a husband who is breaking a cycle. I pray you do too! What a blessing it is to see a child blossom through the love and support of their father! 

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