A father’s love

Just last week I was able to view some old home movies from my childhood.  These were old 8mm movies that were transfered to DVD.  Although my children didn’t really understand why there was no sound, my father and I got a kick out of watching them.  For me it was really something very unique.


When you look at old pictures you get a feeling for that frozen moment in time, but viewing movies is a totally different experience, even without the sound.  I watched footage of my parents playing with me when I was a newborn, my fiirst birthday party, family trips and visits with relatives.  While these were all great to view, there was one thing that really got to me.  Seeing my father play with me.  These images were priceless.  It showed a side of him that I hadn’t seen in many years.


My relationship with my dad is a very formal one.  We talk a few times a week, but mostly it is about things that are really not that important (this is something that is being worked on).  To see him playing with little old me in these old home movies really got to me.  It reminded me how parents have such a strong love for their children, even before their children are old enough to do things on their own.  It reminded me of how much I love my own kids and how fun it is just to play with them.  The joy and love that a parent has for a child is, in fact, almost childlike itself.  We act silly with our kids, do things to make them laugh, and shower our kids with affection.  Eventually the child grows up, life has more demands, and, at times, the parent/child relationship becomes more serious than fun, more formal than comfortable.  This is just my observation.


The fact that it is Rosh Chodesh Menachem Av only makes this post more meaningful, for if it wasn’t for our Father’s love, Avinu Shebashamayim, we would not be here.  The love never stops.

5 thoughts on “A father’s love

  1. Litvak

    Yeyasher kochacho Neil for a fine, beautiful, useful, and thought-provoking post.

    Unfortunately, nowadays especially, there are at times ruptures in the very important father-son relationship.

    May we soon be zocheh to the fulfillment of Malachi 4:24 and the replacememt of rupture with rapture.

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  2. Litvak

    Another reflection in wake of this post – it seems that there is significantly more focus on mother’s love for and role in the lives of their children today, so that those of fathers seem to be often overshadowed. This post is especially welcome because it compensates for that to a degree.

    Another thought – we say in davening at times, e.g. selichos, kiracheim av al banim kein tiracheim Hashem aleinu.

    Does that mean to say that the father’s mercy on children exceeds the mother’s? Perhaps it means parents in general, not specifically fathers? It is interesting that we say that, stressing, at least on the surface, the father’s mercy on his children, while in common perception, the mother’s exceeds his.

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  3. Neil Harris

    Litvak, thanks for both comments.
    “kiracheim av al banim”-I have always thought that it refered to both parents.

    I’m not sure if a father’s mercy exceeds a mothers, but whom do children fear most, their mothers or their fathers?

    I think most kids fear punishment from their fathers and fear disappoining their mothers.

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