Let us love our fathers and bear patiently with them in their old age, just as they were patient and loving with us in our infancy.
It is hard to explain the love a father has for his children. This story called ‘Father’s Love’, found on a website hosting thousands of stories from all over the world, does a great job.
“An 80-year-old man was sitting on the sofa in his house along with his 45-year-old highly educated son.
Suddenly a crow perched on their window.
The father asked his son, “What is this?”
The son replied, “It is a crow”.
After a few minutes, the father asked his son the second time, “What is this?”
The son said “Father, I have just now told you, “It’s a crow”.
After a little while, the old father again asked his son the third time,
“What is this?”
At this time, some expression of irritation was felt in the son’s tone when he said to his father with a rebuff. “It’s a crow, a crow, a crow.”
A little after, the father again asked his son the fourth time, “What is this?”
This time the son shouted at his father, “Why do you keep asking me the same question again and again, although I have told you so many times ‘IT IS A CROW’.”
Are you not able to understand this?”
A little later the father went to his room and came back with an old, tattered diary, which he had maintained since his son was born. On opening a page, he asked his son to read that page. When the son read it, the following words were written in the diary:
“Today my little son aged three was sitting with me on the sofa, when a crow was sitting on the window. My son asked me 23 times what it was, and I replied to him all 23 times that it was a crow. I hugged him lovingly each time he asked me the same question again and again for 23 times.
I did not at all feel irritated, I rather felt affection for my innocent child.”
While the little child asked him 23 times “What is this,” the father had felt no irritation in replying to the same question all 23 times and when today the father asked his son the same question just 4 times, the son felt irritated and annoyed.
Postscript from the author of the story who remains anonymous to this day:
From today say this aloud, “I want to see my parents happy forever. They have cared for me ever since I was a little child.
They have always showered their selfless love on me.
They crossed all mountains and valleys without seeing the storm and heat to make me a person presentable in the society today.”
I found the story quite entrancing, so I scrolled down to see the comments section. Nasser’s comment cut to the quick. (Edited for ease of comprehension — the poor spelling in the original shows its authenticity).
My son went to the most prestigious university in America
If I say something he does not like he says, “You are so stupid.”
Once he told me, “You are stupid as hell.”
Once my dream was to bring him to America and give him the best of education no matter what it takes. I drove taxis for fifteen years with a chronic back pain just to give my kids the best. But today I regret that because they got wonderful education from the most prestigious schools, but they do not have the very basics of life. Love.
I never ate in a good restaurant in my life thinking one day my son will take me and I will happily eat what I want but my son never ever asks me. My son never asks how I am doing he hides away from me
I’m still driving taxis for my living.
What can you say after reading both these short stories? Words fail me.
Perhaps the last story is the most deeply touching. I remember thinking when I was an arrogant young teenager, how stupid my dad was at times.
Mark Twain summed it up so well:
“When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.”
Again, in the comments section, Yusuf Abdella summed up my feelings and the moral of the story. (Edited for clarity)
“This story touched me deeply… I love my dad… and I miss him so much… Please… everyone look after your dad.”
Nasser is right. The foundation of life is love! The words found in a very old book come to mind and they are hard to beat. “Honour your mother and father and it will go well with you, and you will live long in the land.” To put it in the vernacular: always be ready to explain what a crow is no matter how many times your children ask, and as Yusuf said… “Look after your dad.”
Yours for our children,
PS: Love always has a cost. On Monday 25 April, Australia celebrates ANZAC Day. This quote will be repeated endlessly at a thousand dawn services. “Greater love has no man than this that he lay down his life for his friend.”
Take your children to a dawn service if you are able. Tell them the story of the love and sacrifice of past generations, who gave us our freedom at great cost. If you want to know more about the origin of ANZAC Day, watch my short video conversation above with Cody Mitchell.
Photo by Andrea Piacquadio. First published at Dads4Kids.
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