A Father’s Day Tribute

I’ve wanted to write this post for awhile now and thought Father’s Day would be the perfect time.

Father’s Day has been an emotional mixed bag for me personally for many years. My own father has been gone twelve years now. Sadly, I never had a very close relationship with him. He was a much older Dad and I don’t feel he was really up for doing the “Dad thing” by the time I came along in his life. He and my mother divorced when I was twelve and I didn’t see him for many years. Once I graduated high school I went to spend the summer with him. Since by this time I was more “grown up” we did have a pretty good relationship so I was thankful for that time we had together. I saw him only a handful of times after that (he would not travel to come see us) until he died. Although he did get to meet his grandson (the now Teenager) when he was only a little over a year old, he never got to meet the little guy since he came along much later in life.

Now, celebrating Father’s day has extra special meaning in our household. My husband was always described by friends and family as the “dad type”, yet he had no children. By the time he hit age 42 (just before we met) I think he’d come to the conclusion that children were just not in the cards for him. Then he marries a thirty-something year old woman with a twelve year old son. He wanted to be a parental figure in my son’s life and at the time no one knew just how important that would be. My oldest son, [whom I refer to as “Teenager” on this blog] was the unfortunate victim of not only his parents' divorce, but years of completely insane custody and court battles that ensued once his father remarried and effectively stopped being a “Dad” to him. So, the hubby decides he needs to bring his A-game and do all he can for this boy who really needs another parental figure in his life. From day one, Hubby has treated Teenager like his own son and stepped up to the plate to be an active parent. I have to give him the credit he so richly deserves for taking on this challenging but critical role and being willing to do all he does for a child not even his own. Here’s an interesting little tidbit; Teenager and Hubby share the very same first name. What an ironic coincidence. Of course, people just assume Teenager is a “Junior” and that notion has been just fine by both Teenager and Hubby.

When the little guy came along just nine and a half months after Hubby and I married, we really felt a complete-ness to our family. By this time, Hubby was already a dad, but now he had a son of his very own as well. We say he’s got one son with his name and the other one with his face. Raising the little guy thus far has been challenging for sure. Hubby comes home from work [right around the time I’m at the end of my rope] and spends quality time with his youngest son and is a fully participating Daddy. I could not do it without him. Some days I am not quite sure how I’ll even make it through the day until he gets home and I’ll be honest-- there’s been more than a few calls to his office over the years begging asking him to come home early.

As a Father’s Day tribute to my husband, I want to thank and praise him for everything he does and for all the effort he puts into parenting. He takes his Dad role seriously. I know he knows not only what a blessing it is to be a Dad but to have been given that opportunity later in life when it looked like he might not have it at all. He is determined to be the best Dad he can possibly be. He realizes from his own experiences how important it is to be an active Dad, to spend time with his kids, to try to be patient, to talk to them and really learn about and understand them as well as teach and guide and them and have meaningful conversations rather than just superficial ones. Being a Father I’m sure carries a lot of stress for a man; the heavy responsibility of providing for your family especially when you are the main breadwinner and all the other tasks and trials that go along with the job. Raising kids is tough as it is and I cannot thank my husband enough for being willing to take on the additional challenges of our situation and to have done so with such determination, understanding, courage and love.

A couple years ago Teenager gave Hubby a plaque for Father’s Day that pretty well sums it up:

"Any man can be a Father. It takes someone special to be a Dad."

Happy Father’s Day to my hubby

and to Dads everywhere

groomsmen daddy & baby

4 comments:

Margaret said...

How sure we are that we will/are doing so much better than our own parents did/do. And so are our children.

Margaret said...

PS - we think you are both doing a great job, by the way. You can tell by how secure and happy your children are.

Julie said...

wow ...dads/fathers are awesome...I just posted about the same topic too on my blog, but more of a thankful.what beautiful kids you have.

Kristan said...

Here from the Dooce Community, and I just wanted to say how lovely this post is. My fave line:

"We say he’s got one son with his name and the other one with his face."

Hehehe. :)