"My father used to play with my brother and me in the yard. Mother would come out and say, 'You're tearing up the grass.' 'We're not raising grass.' Dad would say. "We're raising boys." --Harmon Killebrew
Fathers play an important role in a child's emotional, physical, and spiritual well being and with Father's Day being tomorrow I wanted to give a huge shout out to the great fathers out there. Some days are tough with kiddos, and there are days when you may feel like you've let your children down more than humanly possible, days where you feel your patience draining, and days when you think you cannot possibly be a good role model. Let me first say, thank you. You care and that's huge.
My father was a huge role model for me and growing up I took for granted the things he did for me. I grew up and realized that the world doesn't revolve around me and I became acutely aware of what both of my parents sacrificed in order for me to have the things I needed and wanted. Now, don't get me wrong, I didn't have the luxury of the newest gadgets when they first came out or the best name brand clothing, but I was surrounded by love and my needs were met. My father worked himself almost into the grave (he fell from the bucket of a cherry picker when I was five from 35 feet up onto asphalt) and yet, all to provide a better life for his family.
While moms are the ones most children run to when they are hurt and look to for kisses when they have "owies," fathers are the ones that pick the child up, dust them off, and say, "You're okay. Let's keep going." Fathers usually bond and interact with their children much differently than mothers do and because of this studies show children with fathers actively involved in their lives are at an advantage.
So, if you're reading this and your father played an active and positive role in your child rearing, thank him. Let him know that he's appreciated. I specifically can recall a few distinct things my father did that may not seem like a big deal to most, but meant the world to me. My father took me to my school dances several times. We lived 35 minutes away from the school so instead of dropping me off, going home for an hour, then coming back to get me, he'd wait in the school parking lot for me. He'd never go in as he didn't want to be "that dad," but, he didn't have to do what he did. It was three hours out of his evenings, evenings after working all day, that he paused what he was doing to take me to a school dance because he knew it'd make me happy.
Thank you to the actively involved fathers around the world. What you do does make a difference. A huge thank you to my own father for being so active- it did make a difference.
A father should be more than a noun in the dictionary. It should be a verb. It's the act of being, doing, supporting, encouraging, disciplining, leading, and loving. Limiting it to a noun is a disservice to what the act of a father actually is.
Salem, Oregon wedding and family photographer