Fathers. They come in almost as many variations as there are men. Dark and hairy or small and skinny; loud and physical or quiet and serious. Older. Younger. Gruff and reserved. Or very affectionate.
Since we celebrate Father’s Day next Sunday, I thought it would be good to post something on the importance of Dads. Then I started thinking about it, and realised there’s really no stereotypical dad any more.
I’ve noticed a substantial increase in the number of fathers pushing prams and hanging round kid’s playgrounds lately. I love the way men seem to be taking time to be with their younger kids and to actively be present in their lives.
Although the boundaries are moving, my observation is that dads still do things differently to mums. Dads in the aforementioned playgrounds are not doing the same things as us gals! I looked round about a dozen dads I know and found these three common traits that I want to celebrate:
Whilst us women tend to champion safety, dad’s push the limits. Think of the kids being encouraged to run faster and kick longer. Wrestling. The way he’s going to win the game – forget about developing confidence or young egos! It’s what’s behind his, “Was that your best?” death stare on bad reports too. We grow because of this stretching. Dad’s extend us.
Dads fix things
From tv remotes and computers to the car or the window it’s still mostly dad who has the art of making it work down pat. All that practical stuff that I don’t love goes to a male in my life whenever possible. Bikes and toys and games broken? Ask your father. Other stuff, too. The worst pain I’ve seen is in fathers who can’t fix the bad things that’ve happened to their kids. Dad is the put-it-back-together man when things fall apart.
Whilst it’s ok for them to question the kids, heaven help anyone else who does! Watch dads on the sideline at sport or when their baby girl’s heart is broken for the first time by a boy. It’s why he doesn’t like stupid teenage behaviours and the associated risks (though he went there himself). And I’ve noticed that kids remain kids forever. You might grow up but you’re still his son/daughter to be looked out for! Dad is a strong defender who wants the best for us, and we feel safer because of it.
So thank you men, and dads. You’re far from perfect, just like us, but you add so much to our lives. We love and appreciate you! Happy Father’s Day!