Many give the role of being a parent solely to the mother. Let me explain. In many cases mothers are left to be both a mother and father due to divorce, separation, or widowing. Some children grow up resenting their father when they are not present or leave the home; Especially, when a father does not make the effort to see their child. Traditional homes carry this connotation by displaying the mother as an authoritative figure as she spends way more time raising the children, whereas the father is portrayed as working hard, long hours to support the family. Still one of the biggest mishaps is that Mother’s Day is inadvertently celebrated way more than Father’s Day. This suggests the role of the mother is way more significant than a father.
Oxford dictionary defines a mother as “to bring (up a child) with care and affection,” while the father is defined as “(of a man) cause a pregnancy resulting in birth of (a child).” These definitions clearly give the responsibility of caring for and raising a child solely to the mother. The father is simply described as a sperm donor.
In my household, my mother was a stay-at-home mom for the first ten years of my life. Her role within our family was dominant, as she was more of the disciplinarian, managerial, protective, and educational figure. My father was more of the fun, nurturing, compassionate, sympathetic, gentle one. My father was also a provider.
Although my upbringing was traditional, my dad was more than just a sperm donor. My dad cooked, cared for, played games with, and encouraged me through some of the hardest and lowest points of my life.
As Father’s Day approaches, I want to give all the good dads out there something to appreciate. Most importantly, I wanted to give my dad a well-deserved worldly recognized gift of how I feel about him. He was and still is the greatest Dad.
One of my fondest memories is cooking with my dad. He not only taught me how to cook but also bake goodies. The house was always filled with fried chicken, home-made mashed potatoes, and greens. For him and our sweet tooth, there was always fruits or home-made cakes or pies. The amazing thing I remember about my dad’s cooking is he always cooks from a place of enjoyment and love. Second, he was always mixing something new together. For instance, he boiled chicken in a pot with collard greens. I loved it. I like to think I cook with love like my dad, and I always mix strange things together.
Another fond memory I have is my dad caring for me as a child when I was sick. I remember I had this horrible earache, and my dad stood up the whole night consoling my pain and drying my tears. If I had a cold, he would twist the tissue inside my nose to pull out all the mucus. If I was ill and vomiting, he would pat me on the back (something I hated), explaining “all of it needed to come up.” If I was scared or afraid to sleep, my dad would stand outside my bedroom door until I did just that, even when he had to work in the morning. When I was hurt by something he was there to console me. If he chastised me when I did wrong, he would always come back to apologize. Two of my favorite dad quotes are, “When you’re hurt, I’m hurt,” or, “Daddy does not want to be a mean daddy.” As an auntie and teacher, I realized apologizing when wrong or explaining to children why they were disciplined makes a difference in how they feel about the experience. For me, I felt my dad wanted me to know what I did was wrong, but that he still loved me anyway. He also wanted me to know he wasn’t trying to be mean, or a bad person, but wanted me to learn from the mistake. He never sugar coated anything, but always put sugar on top to make the situation better. I use these methods as well.
Another thing I loved about my dad is he always made me feel accepted, and like I mattered. There was never any doubt that I belonged to him, and I was his child.
I couldn’t wait for my dad to come home from work. He usually worked very late, and I would stay awake just for him to tuck me in. My dad would pick me up, even in my teenage years, and twirl me around and around in his arms. These things made me feel loved and through him I developed a sense of my worth.
In my twenties my dad and I would go jogging together, play pool with one another, and he would travel back and forth to pick me up from college.
Now in my thirties, I go to my dad first when I need advice. I go to him for two reasons. The first being, I don’t want to hear my mother’s mouth. Second, my dad gives me the greatest advice, and when he can’t, he passes the torch to my mother.
I always say I have my mother’s conservative nature and good looks, but I have my dad’s good heart, his warmth and most of all his survival abilities. My mother may know me, but my dad understands me. I’ve gone through a lot of the same challenges he has. That’s why when my dad consoles me, my pain goes away. My dad’s hugs are the best and he will always occupy a large space in my heart. I wish only to marry a dad like him.
In closing, I would like to give justice to my dad as a great grandfather. Retired and all, my dad babysits, chauffer’s, cooks, cleans, disciplines, and provides for his grands. They receive the same kind of love as we did, but even more devotion and time. There are many more dads out there like him. Let us celebrate our fathers just as much as we do our mothers.
Happy Father's Day Daddy!