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A Wonderful Fathers Day

Monday, June 16, 2014

I got quite the surprise in my lunch today. I am on midnight shift this week and predictably, I felt myself starting to sink into a slump. It happens every time I rotate to night shift. The feelings of isolation and sleep deprivation all begin to take their toll and it can be quite overwhelming. When I was getting ready for my second 12hr shift, I found a note from my oldest daughter. It wasn't fancy, just a simple note telling me how much she loved and appreciated me and how she wanted to take me out for dinner once I get off nights. She even bought me a Subway with her own money.

It is amazing how something so simple can turn things around for a guy. I can't remember the last time I have gotten a simple note of appreciation in my lunch. I wrapped it up and stuck it in my pocket so when I start feeling down, I can pull it out and read it all over again.

I don't talk much about what I do here on Spark because I try to be upbeat and fitness oriented in my posts. After bouncing around doing various jobs I finally got one of the best jobs in the area. It's union, pays very well, and my family no longer goes without. Unfortunately, that kind of freedom also comes with a price tag. I have given up a normal life in order to provide. Life as a miner is filled with good times for sure but it is also filled with mud, mosquitoes, -30 windchills, grease, high voltage, heights, depths, and hazards that will send you home in a body bag if you are careless. Then there are the missed life-moments. Lots of them. There isn't a price that can match missed birthdays, parties, and moments with friends.

I listen to the stories of what happened at various events, eat leftovers, and fight pangs of jealousy as I read the Facebook posts of people with normal lives as they talk about the things they are doing on the weekend.... As I read them at 3am sitting in a truck waiting for a call out. Weekend? What's that?

While not wanting to be sour grapes, that does accurately describe a big chunk of my life.

Then I look at what my personal sacrifices bring for my family and I realize that it's worth it. I'm human and can fall prey to feeling sorry for myself, then I get a note like that and it makes it all better.

I work hard, I sacrifice, I press on, and I never give up because I am a dad.

I wouldn't have it any other way.

Love is strong.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    emoticon emoticon emoticon
    753 days ago
    I knew you did night shifts part of the time, and didn't know what you did.

    You are so blessed. Many times we parents have to wait till our kids are grown, until they thank us this manner.

    So WONDERFUL Robert. I'm happy for you.

    I would love to met you in person.

    Many people aren't full of life that have to do these shifts or kind of work.

    I'm glad you have found outside activities that recharge your psyche
    758 days ago
    Good for her
    758 days ago
    Just catching up on blogs and saw your Father's Day post. So many of you loving fathers toil away with little recognition for what you do. I'm so glad your daughter took the time to let you know that she gets it, and appreciates it. That is a gift that keeps on giving!

    764 days ago
  • v KATHIC2
    Wonderful life moment! That shift work is brutal.
    765 days ago
  • v DLDMIL
    aren't kids great. emoticon emoticon
    770 days ago
    My Dad would leave very early in the morning. I would leave him notes on the counter for him to see before he left for work. He'd leave me notes back. I still have mine. Hold onto that letter. It's very precious. Happy Father's Day!
    771 days ago
    You have a very special daughter! Awesme. ((((HUGS))))
    771 days ago
  • v JAMER123
    What a beautiful note from your loving daughter!! Shift work does take a toll on the family as I well know having worked 3rd shift for many yrs. You aren't remembered by what you did for a job or the shift you work but by the things you do at home with your family. Those are the fun things in life and remembered forever. My dad has been gone for 20 yrs. and I remember the fun times thing when we camped together and as my DH & I raised our family, the connections I still had with my dad. He is missed. That's the important and that is what you have concluded! Good for you and blessings to you. Hope your Father's Day was enjoyed even thou
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon gh you have a job to do!
    771 days ago
  • v IRISHGAL46
    It may help you to know that your children do not remember the days, they remember the moments so that is what we should focus on as parents. Good luck to you. Your children have a very special Dad.
    771 days ago
    What a sweet gesture from your sweet daughter!
    771 days ago
  • v LINDAK25
    You just defined what it is to be a DAD. Happy Father's Day!
    771 days ago

    Great way to show love and appreciation!
    771 days ago
    Yea you Robert!!!
    771 days ago
    Wow, I had no idea that you had a job as a miner on top of everything else you do. You're truly amazing and an inspiration.
    772 days ago
    I hope that one day your certifications and your writing can bring you enough money to support your family in the way you are supporting them now, without the risks and the night shifts! Yes, it is worth the sacrifices, but maybe someday you won't have to make them!
    772 days ago
  • v NOTGVGUP83
    I know it's rought for everyone in your situation. I'm living it daily also but my hubby rotates between 3 shifts. =/ Glad your daughter made your night better!
    772 days ago
  • v LINDAKAY228
    I am so happy for you that you got that wonderful note! I know, because I've made lots of sacrifices for my kids and then my grandkids, how much the simple things can touch us! So much more than a store bought item. They really do appreciate how much you go out of your way for them!
    772 days ago
  • v GINA180847
    What a sweet daughter! You are so loved by many.
    772 days ago
    That was a wonderful note, sure makes everything worth while.
    772 days ago
  • v GORDON66
    What a lovely Fathers' Day note. Good for you!
    772 days ago
    Beautifully said! What an awesome note from your daughter. Just proof that you are raising her up right. Be very proud dad... be very proud!
    772 days ago
    Love is strong. As parents we do whatever it takes. But it is tthose little things that make it worthwhile. You are a great Dad raising great girls. emoticon
    772 days ago
    It isn't so much that you provide the food on the table and the security of not going without, although both are important, of course.

    It's more that you provide the foundation, inspiration and example that led your daughter to write you such a love-infused note.

    What a wonderful father you are. And congratulations on the REAL gifts you give.

    772 days ago
    That letter is absolutely adorable. What a very special daughter you have. Your family probably appreciates what you do more than they let on. What you do for work is hard and it is a lot of sacrifice but you should be proud because not many people would do what you do. You are amazing and great job on being an amazing dad!
    772 days ago
  • v NUMD97
    In the quiet of the morning, with most still sleeping, or just getting up, and the laundry already awaiting the dry cycle, I thought to spend a few moments visiting your page. Being a long-time fan, I already know your story. You don't need to have Father's Day to know that you are doing a great job with your kids. You live that each and every day. You still have young girls, and even at this most impressionable age, they already "get" what daddy does for all of them. That's priceless, Robert, and it speaks volumes about you as a parent.

    But I'm still glad you found your daughter's note in your lunch sack. Sometimes having it written out like that, makes it more real for the bad times when we start to doubt ourselves. Read it as often as you need, but to the rest of us, we already know the kind of man you are.

    Thanks for allowing us to be a small part of your world, Robert. And thanks for posting this blog. It made my morning.
    772 days ago
    Little things do matter
    772 days ago
    emoticon Those moments when you get to see that your kids *do* listen and care and are thankful? Priceless! Sometimes it takes a couple or three decades for them to get to the appreciation of why Dad or Mom missed things... the provider role is probably the least "intuitive" for a child to "get"... but eventually, they do get it.

    Happy Father's Day... to a great Dad whom I have had the privilege to see in action around his daughters! For all you do, Thank You!
    772 days ago
  • v CM_GARDNER78
    Aw!! emoticon What a sweet thing for her to do!! It definitely makes it worth keeping on. :-) Good job daddy!
    772 days ago
  • v PICKIE98
    I have always been a morning person, could not stay awake past nine no matter what. You are a great dad and hubby. Your daughter is gold!
    772 days ago
    What an awesome gift! Keep smiling!! emoticon
    772 days ago
  • v NEW-CAZ
    772 days ago
    Night shift is hard. Kudos to you for doing what you can.
    772 days ago
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