I have been anticipating this day for half a year–exactly six months. Today, Father’s Day 2021, is the summer solstice. There is the longest amount of daylight today, and beginning tomorrow, the daylight will begin waning again. The earth is tilted on its axis, which means one hemisphere receives more sunlight and energy at different times of the year. I am in my element in full sun, full heat; long days.
How fitting that this day falls on the day we honor fathers, who, along with mothers, provide us with life, light and warmth from the day we were born.
When I think of Father’s Day, most of my childhood memories of this day were created in the wheat field. It seems Dad was always harvesting on his day of honor, and we would celebrate him in his element; a farmer in his Kansas wheat field.
My son Jude with Dad in the combine
It didn’t seem fair that he didn’t get to take the day off, but he didn’t seem to mind. It’s what farmers do. When the wheat is ready, duty calls. The weather dictates their harvest schedule, and when the wheat ripens, the skies are clear and the wheat is dry, time is of the essence.
According to our farming brother, harvest will likely begin in three or four days, if the weather continues to cooperate. I will make my annual mecca to the farm, because a day in the wheat field, complete with sweat, dirt, wheat dust and full-on stink makes me feel whole again. Hopefully I can talk Suzanne into joining me; we have made the trip together in the past few years. Gail hasn’t been there in a few years; hopefully she can make the trip as well. It is the pinnacle of the year on the farm; we all grew up with our household economy revolving around this relatively short period of time each summer. We know how important it is, and there is no substitute for the energy and vibe of harvest.
Just like with Mother’s Day, it gets a little easier each year to celebrate this special day without Dad present. Today, I celebrated with my husband and his dad; Gail and Suzanne do not have their fathers-in-law to celebrate with. We have kept both Mom and Dad alive in our hearts, and this gets easier to do every day of the year.
Fathers, summer and harvest–so much to celebrate. Our wish is that you find as much joy in each of these as we do.