As we begin to celebrate our Father's, it is always interesting to reflect on the love of our parents. As adults, we finally have the time to look back at the time spent with our parents day in & day out as children and reflect on how that relationship has now grown. Sometimes for the better & sometimes that relationship has faded. Whatever the outcome may be, that love or absence of love has shaped who we are as adults. 

As Zane sits down on the blog this week, he shares his time spent in Montana celebrating his Father’s 70th birthday. Reflection on his connection with his Father and the weighted power of choice & circumstance is a powerful read. 

Zane Wilemon 

Co-Founder and Executive Director, Ubuntu Life

“I haven’t seen my father in some time, but his face is always staring back at me. His heavy hands hanging at the ends of my arms and my colors change like the sea.”  These lyrics from Brandi Carlile’s recent song, Most of All, linger as I fly home from Montana after spending a few days celebrating my Dad’s 70th birthday.  My brother Rance and I just drove the hour plus winding roads through the Gallatin Canyon talking through the last few days with our father.  We shared the weight of our fathers love, the absence of what we may have hoped to receive from his love, and also laughingly reminisced about some of our favorite moments with the old man. That description of Carlile’s fathers “heavy hands” resonates powerfully with me as I think about the significance of a fathers presence in our lives...positively or negatively.

As my brother and I reflected on the weekend, of our weighted time in the orbit of our father, the energy of these days sits like a stone within my heart. How we grow up with an understanding of how things are because of how our parents determine what they will be is a strange thing to ponder. And this understanding is a like a train track running through our consciousness driving many of our life’s choices and, therefore many of the circumstances that our lives navigate...all because of the presence of those who bore us. 

When I think on our perceived freedoms, I wonder just how liberated we truly are when so much of who we are stems from this weight or this rootedness of our origins. Believe me I know that we have the power to change our circumstances, but that power at some point is always either fighting through the perceived limitations of what we inherited or embracing and capitalizing on their benefits, whether that be via nature or nurture.  It is still a freedom, but a freedom established through a powerful exercise of choice...perhaps the most significant choice of our lives which is such a bizarre truth when you think about it. Our freedom resides through cutting the cords and deciphering the channels of influence of our very beings that bind us to those who gave us  


Speaking of channels, the gift of Montana’s wilderness, of the fluid life giving force of fly fishing in mountain streams was birthed through my father determining that exposure for me.  And now here we are, some 30 years from our maiden voyage to this hallowed ground, celebrating my Dad’s 70th birthday.  We were also here to commemorate my Dad’s 60th birthday and God willing it will be where we mark his 80th. And as much as I love Montana, Montana is not Montana if it were not placed within my heart from the love I received from my Dad by gifting me these experiences.   

 We are all connected, we are all in need of one another...even despite the pain caused or perhaps the love not received by those we loved most growing up. Sometimes it is actually that original pain that gifts us our greatest capacities to love.  I’m beyond thankful for this time to be in my fathers orbit, to have the time to reflect and circle about the emotions with my brother Rance.  Family origin stuff is never simple, no profound life giving relationship typically is.  Thankful.

                                                                                        Big love,