On Father’s Day I wanted to write a tribute to all the Daddies out there. I know sometimes they get a bad press, I see the meme’s that say ‘I don’t want to sleep like a baby, I just want to sleep like my husband’. I see the looks that people give me when I say my husband is watching the children while I have a ‘day off’. ‘Are you sure he’s going to be alright?’ ‘Do you need to dash back? Will he manage alright on his own?’ they cry! And mainly when I see these things happening I feel sad, because, breaking news, your child has not one, but two parents! I spent a lot of time these days explaining that my husband is a parent too. And do you know what? Often he’s a better parent than me.
I am the one that’s at home everyday, doing all the day to day parenting, he’s here evenings, weekends, holidays, nights too. And although I bearate him for not loading the kid’s bowls in the dishwasher in the right place, that he’s not sure who’s socks are whose when the washing needs putting away or that he buys them way too may sweets. My children’s father is pretty awesome and I know I don’t tell him enough.
He makes my children laugh in a way I never can. He can change their sulk or frown, into a giggle or a laugh in an instant with a quick quip, whereas I just loose my patience. I hear the Small Boy laughing almost every night at bedtime as they share a private joke that they made up together and I always stop tidying downstairs to listen to his belly laugh that only his Daddy can produce.
All of my children love the way he plays rough and tumble with them, and the way he throws them around the sofa or the bed. They laugh and squeal ‘stop’ while meaning ‘keep going!’ He’ll chase them in an open space or have them ride around on his back. I love the way it bonds them and it’s something they only enjoy with Daddy.
My children’s lives are made better everyday when he calms my parenting neuroticism. I’ll worry about what one of them is not learning at school, or that I think the homework is too hard or too much or too little, or that I should say something to an after school club about how one of them has had an earache, or feel bad when the dentists asks for another appointment with one of them for something. I panic and stress and worry over what might be going on in their lives and yet he’s always there telling me ‘don’t worry about it’ or ‘it will all sort itself out in the end’. Sometimes you just need that reassuring voice that actually it’s all going to be fine and because of their daddy telling me so, my children are all the better for it.
We laughed yesterday as the Small Boy woke late evening from his sleep and exceptionally, unusually shouted out for ‘Mummy, Mummy!’ and while that’s all I hear in the daytime from him, I never hear it at night as he knows that it’s always Daddy who comes! While it has’t always been the case in years gone by, now it’s all about Daddy through the night. The Small Boy climbs into bed and he just wants Daddy, Daddy is the one who gets the most cuddles, the feet in the head, the elbow in the back. At night time Mummy is sidelined, and do you know what, that’s fine by me, third time around I just need my sleep! I love that they all want and need him as equally or more so than they want or need me. That he’s their comforter as much as I am.
I know on Father’s Day not all families are as lucky as we are and I can’t imagine what life would be like without a daddy for some children or for some Mamas. Which makes it all the more pertinent to be grateful on Father’s Day and to say thank you for whatever it is your children’s father does for you and them.
And while we all get parenting wrong from time to time, and we can’t always be on our game every single day, this man will be forever their parent too.
I believe it’s more than about time that we stop thinking the worst of the Daddies out there and stop pandering to society’s view of their incompetence and start recognising them as the awesome, equal to Mama parents they really are.
Needless to say I think my children’s father is pretty amazing and I feel I don’t tell him that often enough.
So tomorrow’s the day to let your children’s father know he’s the bees knees. I’ll be letting mine know that all those little things he does makes my children’s life massively better in every way and I am always grateful for that, even when I am picking the soggy coco pops, that I would never have bought, off the floor!