In desperation, I entrusted my car keys to an approachable onlooker, offering a quick explanation before bolting through traffic on foot. It was a holiday and a beautiful morning for a parade. As daughters of a firefighter, my sisters and I always had a great love of parades – we wax nostalgic over privileged seating in the cab of the fire trucks, smiling, waving and sometimes throwing candy to onlookers. (Regulations later prohibited anyone but firefighters from riding in the cabs of the trucks.) This particular morning, however, my father lay dying at Hospice. With the parade route blocking my sole access to him, I barely noticed everyone’s smiling faces. I cannot recall ever feeling so hindered.
Becoming a single parent typically happens through life circumstance or choice. Yet such instances or events aren’t limited to the years between your children’s birth and the day they turn 18. While divorce rates are declining overall, divorce rates for seniors are rising. Typically having spent a life preparing to retire together often these parents, or even grandparents, find themselves financially much worse off than if their divorce had occurred years or even decades before.
With a booming economy and summer tourists, many of the wonderful attractions around Calgary that parents like to bring their children to for entertainment and fun, can become much more crowded. Pressure is increased and stress is at an all-time high. How to deal with the crowds while you are navigating the city’s amenities with children in tow? Easy - if you plan ahead:
Daughters and dads have a unique relationship. There is that moment in the hospital when a dad first holds his daughter and his eyes and heart go soft with love and a promise to be there for her always. The toddler years are filled with chubby hands clasping onto dad’s finger as she begins to take her first steps; playing in the park; airplane rides on the carpet; and curling up for afternoon naps.
Calgary’s Child Magazine © 2017 Calgary’s Child