We all know the stereotype for moms–a Wonder Woman who rushes to put a healthy meal on the table for her family while ensuring little Billy’s soccer uniform is washed for practice before assuming the role of chauffeur for the next couple hours of her day. Moms make sure the house runs smoothly, and they manage to remember things like teacher gifts at Christmas and the end of the year.
However, for as important a mom is to the family, the dad carries the largest burden for the overall health and success of his children. We’ve all heard the statistics–the majority of teenagers who end up serving time in juvenile detention centers, entering lives of crime, or the unthinkable, taking their own lives, do not have a father present. There are even statistics within the Christian faith for the likelihood of a child choosing to attend church as an adult; the largest determining factor is whether or not the father attends, regardless of the attendance of the mother.
The role of a dad is crucial, and it’s only right to say ‘thank you’ to all those fathers who take their role seriously. I remember my own father had a wooden plaque in his office with a painting of fathers with their children, and the inscription read, “Anybody can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a daddy.”
I have been blessed by three daddies in my own life. First there is the daddy who came to every one of his daughter’s gymnastics meets; the daddy who reserved time for father-daughter dinner dates and listened to this worrier panic at the thought of a low ‘A’ in biology; the daddy who sat next to his daughter on her bed, his arm around her, during one of her last days as a ‘Vignola’ when she was overcome with emotion. ‘Thank you’ to my daddy.
Then there is the daddy who has forgone the luxuries of things for the richness of family, the daddy who works long hours and comes home tired yet finds the energy for bath time and stories, the daddy who spends his day of rest making pancakes for his kids and visiting the library looking for books about dinosaurs and stuffed rabbits. ‘Thank you’ to my children’s daddy.
And finally, there is the daddy who taught his son about the importance of faith, the daddy who used vacation time for family trips or days to get ready for Santa’s coming, the daddy whose example helped make my kids’ daddy the amazing father that he is. ‘Thank you’ to my husband’s daddy.
Happy Father’s Day to all the men who are not just someone’s father but a child’s daddy.