What’s your favourite part about being a dad?
That’s what I asked dads this week on Facebook to give the men a chance to have a say as Father’s Day is around the corner! To celebrate the awesome dads in our lives, I thought we’d do a round-up of some of the answers we got to honor the men in our communities who truly love and cherish being dads!
And I think I’ll intersperse it with some of my favourite photos of Keith with our girls. He’s an AWESOME dad. They love him so much; and he loves them. And I teared up even just putting the graphic together for today’s post! I didn’t grow up with an awesome dad; it’s been one of the greatest privileges of my life to be married to someone, though, who is one.
So thank you to all the great dads out there.
(And PS: Read to the bottom for a special announcement).
Here are some of the best parts of being a dad:
1. Meeting your child for the first time
Childbirth is additionally meaningful to dads–they may have felt the kid kick, but they’re really meeting each other for the first time after the baby is born–even more so than mom!
Meeting both of my kids for the first time.
Our son (7) was the product of an emergency c-section. Also mom needed to be put to sleep, which prevented me from being in the room. So I met him about 30 minutes after he was born in the c-section recovery room and got to introduce him to mom after she woke back up.
Our daughter (4) was a planned c-section, and I was in the room this time. I got to hold her within five minutes of her birth, and we got the cute photo of the three of us in the OR.
Holding and praying over both my children when they where born. The feeling of being gifted with those two miracles is something I will never forget.
2. The cuddles and unconditional love that children have and freely give
This was pretty universal–pretty much every dad had some iteration of this as part of his answer.
My favorite thing is the random love for no apparent reason. Sudden hugs, sudden “I love you”s, etc.
I love cuddling with my kids and rocking my 2 year old to sleep.
They show me so much unconditional love. They just want to be with me… Until they are bored.
3. Creating memories and traditions together
I’ve been their step-dad for the last 7 years. My favorite thing is teaching them new things and providing them new experiences. Some of my favorite memories with my 14 year old son is teaching him to drive my car (a 1987 Supra we are fixing up) and riding his first roller coaster with him. My favorite memory with our 9 year old is riding go karts with her and watching scary movies with her because that is something we both really love.
Reading at bedtime is a great memory. Bedtime was MY thing to do, and we read just about every night. I have cassettes of some of those sessions from 30 years ago… can’t wait to do the same on occasion with the grandchild!
Sometimes the memories that are created aren’t even initiated by dad! Sometimes it’s the kids that get the ball rolling, and it’s just amazing to get to see their creativity flourish!
The hand drawn pictures I receive for no reason. And the plays and shows announced via handwritten invitation to be performed at 7:00 sharp.
4. How excited they are when Dad comes home
Some of the dads who answered were stay-at-home dads, but a lot of dads who worked outside the house said that their favourite part of being a dad is just how happy their kids are when they come home after work:
I love opening the door and hearing, “Daddy!” Or “Dada!”
Coming home from work and hearing the excitement from the kids as they yell “DADDY” and run to give hugs.
Best part of my day is usually coming home from work and having my son run up for a jump hug. His excitement at seeing me is pretty infectious although he’s getting a bit heavy for my back.
5. Getting to watch them grow up into little people
Watching your kid grow up to be their own person is amazing–seeing their interests, personality, and character develop is something a lot of dads treasure.
Seeing him learn and grow, develop his sense of humor and self, and seeing the world through his eyes when we experience things as a family.
There’s two things that were both memorable and wonderful:
1) watching my children discover the world around them.
2) their special way of pronouncing certain words. Keperch = Ketchup. Bawwls = peas.
The best part about being a dad is seeing the world through those child-like eyes again. Watching your kids explore the world and grow & find out who God has made them to be is unbelievably awesome.
6. The privilege of pouring your heart and soul into your kids
The little signs that you’re doing a great job, especially if you are trying to parent in a better way than was modeled to you by your own parents, all make the heart-wrenching love of fatherhood worth every bit of it.
Those little moments, like when they give me a huge hug for no reason, or when they say ‘I missed you today Daddy’, that they will probably not remember, but that I’ll always remember. That, and the opportunity to grow and to do better than my father did. To take the things from my childhood and learn from them and change them
And that moment when you can do something for your kid that they find meaningful–truly, truly meaningful–that has a piece of you within it. We love what this dad said about his relationship with his 17-year-old daughter:
My daughter is 17. She has been into drama and music like her mom & dad forever. I am a builder & tinkerer and I love working on projects for her school shows and for things around the house. I will spend hours (and lots of money sometimes) on building things we could have bought but they mean more if made by hand. The payoff is when I hear her brag to her friends, “my dad made this for me.”
But in the last few months, we’ve discovered that another awesome part about being a dad…
is becoming a grandpa.
Congratulations, Rebecca and Connor!
Take a moment today to appreciate the fathers in your life. Give your husband a word of encouragement about being a great father. Give him a great massage. Do something to show him how valued his contribution to the life of your kids is, and let’s work to encourage and uplift the men who are truly doing great jobs at being the best dads they can be!
Happy Father’s Day, everyone!