“You mean, after all this I’ve done, I’ve been good for nothing!? I don’t get treats, rewards, or anything?” asks your normal-every-day child. Are we grown-ups sometimes like this child? Looking for immediate rewards for the good we’ve done? It is possible to do good and do what’s right because it’s the right thing to do. No thank-you’s or pats on the back necessary! Yes, you can be taken aback always being the one to forgive, the one to always take the high road, and ultimately the one taken advantage of. But you can feel good in knowing that in the end – whether on your deathbed or they on theirs – that you did your part, the good part, with no regrets.
On the other hand, have you been a father who didn’t do the good and right things? A father who has regrets? You skipped out on your wife and young children. Could your children say they were ‘good for nothing’ and you left anyway? Chances are they’re grown-ups now and doing reasonably well. But as their father, you just seem not to be able to connect as you’d like. They’re polite and all, but you feel the tension in the air. These Hearts-R-Mending words could be your words:
What can I say except I’m sorry
I could have been a better dad
I wasn’t there to see you grow up
I’m not proud of that – I truly feel sad.
I know that the pain and hurt
And all the disappointments are still there
And I know it’s hard to believe
But daughter I really do care.