My father’s birthday was June 15th, very close to Father’s Day, and often it’s been the same day as Father’s Day, but throughout my father’s life, when he was alive, he didn’t want us to celebrate Father’s Day and his birthday together.
He insisted on separating them, which I always thought was out of character for a man who didn’t seem to stand on ceremony or formality much.
He also wasn’t very materialistic. It wasn’t about doubling the gifts because he didn’t really need very much in life.
In fact, when we sold a long-time summer home, I asked him if he was unhappy about that and he said,” I don’t need a house to be happy at the beach. I just need a beach chair.”
I never had a chance to ask him why it was so important to separate these two events but in thinking about it recently, I realized that he would probably say, “You don’t choose to be born but you choose to be a father.”
And as a father of five, he felt it was important to separate these, to give that its own event, its own recognition.
It also made me realize that when we use this term “out of character”, maybe that’s kind of meaningless because everything a person does is part of their character and my father separating out this role as a father, to acknowledge and celebrate that, was very much part of his character.
If there’s somebody in your life behaving in a way or doing something that you feel is out of character for them, take some time to learn more about why they are doing it. You may just discover a different facet of their character indeed.