Tag Archives: fathers

Celebrating Great Fathers

If you’re like me, your Facebook feed today is full of children and mothers thanking the Fathers in their lives.  Video tributes, hand crafted items, taking Dad out for his favorite meal…but what’s really great is they are truly expressing love and appreciation for Fathers.  This generation of Fathers is more involved in their children’s lives than ever before.  Some are stay-at-home primary caregivers to their children and their spouse works outside the home.  Men are achieving more work/life balance to not stay long hours at the office but rather race home to spend time with their children.  

We’re starting to see a change in mindset of how people view and talk about Fathers.  TV shows and commercials are no longer shaming the stupid/lazy Dad cliche of yesteryear with a perfect superhero Mom/wife correcting his silly mistakes.  People are shamed for suggesting that a Dad spending time with his children is “stuck babysitting.”  You probably have heard of programs called “Mothers Day Out.”  This title assumes only Mothers are primary caregivers that need time away from their children.  What about the stay at home dad, or the single Dad trying to make it?  Though I am not a stay-at-home Dad myself, I was pleased when my church started a program and chose to call it “Parents Day Out.”  Thank you for realizing that child care is not a Mother-only endeavor anymore.

Now, men and Fathers have made many mistakes in the past and there are endless stories of absent or neglecting Fathers.  But things are changing and Fathers are more involved than ever.  When I take my son out by myself without my wife I don’t need women to give me a sympathetic look as if I’m stuck and am a clueless Dad who will surely screw this up.  But the good news is, more and more I see smiles and appreciation for a Father spending time with his son.  And that’s the story happening all over, and our media is finally beginning to reflect that.  A month ago when I was shopping for a Mothers Day present, I also saw this in the store:

Great Dad

Many people have had bad experiences with their Fathers, or didn’t have a Father around for them.  So Father’s Day can be a source of pain (as can Mother’s Day for the same reason).  My heart goes out to those with those types of Father issues.  Thankfully I had a great Dad who was very involved.  He would race home from work to be with us, he left early to coach our sports, he was a mentor to other kids whose parents weren’t around or didn’t care to show up to watch their games.  He set a great example for my brothers and me, and so I can be thankful for the time I had with him.  When he passed away, at first I felt robbed of more time with him.  I try to keep perspective of others that lost their Fathers at younger ages, or never knew their Father at all and I feel blessed.

The more we can see positive examples of Fathers blowing up our Facebook feed, women and Mothers celebrating and praising the men in their lives instead of complaining about them as well as the media reflecting a more positive image the better off we’ll be.

These days, Dads do it all.  Change diapers, wipe noses and tears, play dolls and have tea parties, help with homework, coach sports, taxi to practices and music lessons, prepare meals, do the laundry…everything there is for a parent to do.  Thank you to all the Dads out there being great examples to your kids and families.  And for those who didn’t know your Dad, I hope you’ve had a chance to find a mentor in your life to help fill the void.  Ultimately, God can fill that void as our Heavenly Father but He has also blessed us with many great Dads around us to help fill in the gaps.


Celebrating the good fathers

It’s been a while since I’ve written a blog post, in short due to busyness at work and enjoying my 7 month-old son.  I used to spend time writing a post and proofreading and editing it too much, and I’ve got a folder of ideas that I procrastinate getting to.  Then there’s the stat sheet, which can either excite you or drain your enthusiasm.  My friend Teri on her blog Grits and Bottle Rockets recently posted an inspiration to just get writing.  Just do it, just write.  There’s nothing to proofread or edit if you don’t start somewhere.

So I’ve decided to try and just write when I get the inspiration and knock it out.  And normally I try to write random ideas not associated with any holiday or current event, but this one’s a coincidence with Father’s Day coming up soon.

Baby stroller - this is how i roll

Recently I was out walking my son in the stroller around my neighborhood.  I saw 3 other dad’s hanging out with their kids either playing on the porch or walking with strollers, too.  The thought struck me how great it is to see so many fathers spending time with their kids.  While there are some bad or absent fathers out there, in general fathers often get a bad rap.  Look no further than your television:  whether in scripted shows or even the commercials where usually the man is a bumbling idiot with no clue and the wife/mother looks on and shakes her head at her stupid oaf of a husband.

I thought it’d be nice to acknowledge and celebrate when we do see good examples of fathers who are spending time with their kids, being good mentors and showing them love and care.  There are more stay-at-home dads these days that do a fantastic job.  There are dads who aren’t afraid to change a diaper or get up and comfort a crying baby back to sleep at 4am.  There are dads who help out around the house and bring relief to tired mommies.  When you see any children’s sports team, you’ll no doubt see fathers who volunteer to coach.  They leave work early to teach fundamentals and wipe snotty noses.  When you drop your kids off at their classes at church, you will find more and more men volunteering to work with children.

Men grow up in competition mode all the time, taught not to show emotion or weakness and are constantly having to prove their masculinity.  When a man becomes a father, you see him no longer care about himself but put his family first.  A good father would sacrifice himself, would embarrass himself in public, attend a tea party or wear a ridiculous costume to make their kids happy.  A father will display failed craft projects and wear horrid clothing items if purchased for him by his children.  There are all sorts of reasons to be thankful for your father, and I invite you to share yours in the comments.

I am blessed to have grown up with a great dad, and had prep from my brothers and friends with kids to learn by their example and advice.  Who would you like to acknowledge?  If not your own father or a father figure in your life, do you know any dads who are a great example and deserve some thanks and recognition?

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