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Ode to Daddy

Yesterday we took a day to honor “dad.”

 We gave love to our own dad, kissed our husband and let him “play” for the day, helped the kids make glittery cards, and carefully wrapped the gadget he’s been longing for.

 In many families “father” means something big these days. Dads are pulled in a million directions. We expect them to be the breadwinner and provide for their family, be loving and attentive to their partners, and be connected and present dads to their children.

 Truth is, it’s often impossible for dads to get all of that done in a day. It it happens, it makes for one tired daddy. And if it doesn’t, it makes for one irritated mommy. That’s a lot for a guy balance.  

 My heart has always been pulled by mamas. The ferocity with which a mom cares for her children is stunning to me. The emotional and physical energy it takes to be with your children most of the day, no matter how fabulous they are, is tremendous.

 Now, I’ve been very well taken care of by the two amazing dads in my life…my own and my husband. I’m a lucky girl.

 But as I’ve spent more time getting to know dads of all kinds, both as a teacher and as a parenting coach, I have been blown away by their dedication, patience, tenacity, and sensitivity. Dads are intensely loving creatures, so earnest….so dedicated.

 So here’s my thanks to all of you sweet dads out there…and there are a lot of you.

 – Thanks for working hard each day, at a job that doesn’t truly inspire you, to take care of your family.

 – Thanks for always getting the cockroaches.

 – Thanks for playing babies and wiping bottoms; things you never imagined doing as a grown man.

 – Thanks for enduring the heartache of “I don’t want YOU! I want MAMA!” a million times, and still trying.

 – Thanks for listening to our venting, tolerating our exhausted irritability, and loving us anyway.

 – Thanks for being a strong man with a soft heart, who’ll protect you from danger and cry at recitals.

 – Thanks for wearing a baby carrier around your guy friends, and looking good doing it.

 – Thanks for helping with dinner, bath, and bedtime…when you’d love to just collapse on the couch after a rough day at work.

 – Thanks for wrestling matches and helping with science projects, and the many other things we don’t want to do.

 – And thanks for loving our kids with everything you’ve got. When the kids slip their little hands in yours, and peer up lovingly at their sweet daddy…know that you hold their hearts and ours.