In honor of Father’s Day this coming weekend, I offer some of my own feelings on fatherhood. Really, this is a tribute to the greatest dad I have ever met – my husband Nick (borodaddy?!). HA. He will be embarrassed about this post, but oh well it won’t be the first time I have embarrassed someone with my sappiness and carrying on. 🙂 Maybe this already seems like a silly exaggeration to many of you – but really it’s not. He actually is the best and he is teaching Marley and me every day about what fatherhood means.
I’ve never met my father. Never even seen a photo. My mom raised me alone until she married my stepfather when I was nine years old (and that’s a different tribute for a different day..all single moms go to heaven). While my stepfather is a great guy who has always taken care of my mom and me, I still have an empty space in my heart and mind where most people keep that “daddy” emotion. You know, “daddy’s little girl” and “my dad threatened to kill my first date with a shotgun” or even “my dad can be a real jerk but he’s the only one I’ve got” – I’m a very sensitive soul and I understand absolutely none of it. Until now, Father’s Day was an uncomfortable reminder of this void. Admittedly, I wondered how I would relate to Nick being Marley’s dad. Would I be jealous? Would I be selfish with my time? Would I understand anything about what he was going through becoming a father?
I don’t have answers to those questions but I do know that I am overwhelmed every day thinking about how fortunate Marley and I are, having Nick to take care of us. Seriously, I often contemplate what good deeds I accomplished in a prior life – it is the only feasible explanation. I mean, I probably invented chocolate or even roller skating or something….
Surely I cannot include a comprehensive list of all of the reasons he is the greatest dad on earth, but I shall try to paint the general picture for you. When we got married, he talked about his strong admiration for older brothers and super-dads Pete and Ben – these are real family men and he knew he wanted his own family to follow their example. When I was pregnant and having a really rough day, he would come home and take one look at me and ask if I wanted to order pizza instead of cooking the vegetable soup. Then, against my good judgement, I believed him when he insisted I did not resemble a hippopotamus. During the first few weeks of Marley’s life when we had various challenges related to nursing, he kept us afloat – from holding ice water in front of me so I could sip from the straw to consistently telling me what a good job I was doing. This was huge – as those of you know who have experienced such challenges, it’s easy to feel like a failure when your baby is screaming instead of nursing. Because of his support, I never felt that way for more than a second and Marley and I now have a very successful breastfeeding relationship. He holds Marley, sings to Marley, acts silly with Marley, dances with Marley, and tells Marley about how much fun they’re going to have one day playing soccer. I was going to orchestrate a surprise “day off” for him for a Father’s Day gift… you know, get all his guys together to take him out for an old-fashioned time at the pub. But then, he kept talking about how he couldn’t wait for Father’s Day to spend a wonderful day with his family – us! So, you get the picture….. really I am not exaggerating about it – he is the best.
So, Nick. All you wanted for Father’s Day was a day with your family, but you got this long-winded tribute, as well. Too bad. 😉 I’ll buy you a bottle of scotch too if you’re not careful.
Happy Father’s Day to all those real dads out there…. we need you, and thank you.