I've been married for twelve years. I have had my ups and my downs within that time period with my wife but never have I thought to giving up on our relationship. It bore many fruits, many moments of joy and even some sadness, but above all it gave me my most treasured blessings of all. My children. I have three. Two boys and girl. My oldest son wants to be a vet when he grows up and loves animals. His younger brother wants to be a ninja. I told him being a ninja isn't the most practical thing to want to be but I don't think I'm dismaying him much. Finally the youngest, my daughter, wants to be the next Hannah Montana. She will sing at a drop of a dime. Anywhere. At the grocery store, in the van or even in class, which we had a chat about not doing that at school.
There are snippets of memories that flash occasionally when I'm talking to them or working on a school project now that burst through to the present and takes me back when they were just babies. Crying, waking my wife and I in the middle of the night. My wife and I playing rock, paper, scissors groggily at three in the morning to see who would get up. The spit ups over my just starched to perfection shirt and tie, the bottle feeding and the aroma of a fully loaded diaper. At the time I thought it was hell on earth. An undertaking that would break me, that would break my wife's constitution as well. The relationship took hits because of the children as well. I'm rather selfish so expecting my " me time "
was a huge hurdle that took a serious commitment on my part.
No longer could I play my video games when ever I wanted to. No longer could I just go to my office and hide myself from the world. There's always something the kids may need at the time. From simpler affairs like getting them something to eat or drink to child proofing all the cabinets in the house. Some days were harder than others. Sometimes days were easier. But always there was work. Always something to do..clean up, to get, to soothe, to parent.
You would think so far from reading this: " Whoah, I ain't having kids" ..lol. Well, it is an undertaking that's for sure but the rewards have always been immeasurable. The first time they say " Daddy ". The first time they take their first wobbly steps before they land on their bottom. When you're dead tired in the middle of the night, rocking them to sleep and you fall in exhaustion on the couch with them and they fall asleep on your chest. Or the first time they say I love you to you.
This post is to all you dads, young and old, who are giving up playing that multiplayer session on Friday Night Fights because you're actually helping your significant other with the kids. This post is to all you men, who will occasionally be playing a video game with your kid on your lap while the old lady is away. I wont tell her. This is for you who don't feel either appreciated or frustrated working, earning a living, trying to make ends meet, juggling bills and yes making the tough call that you may have to pass on getting that new system or game for the betterment of your family.
Here's a toast to you. To the real
men doing the hardest job there is, aside from being a mother, and that's being a father.
This is your day. Savor it. Enjoy the crappy tie, the ugly shirt, or for the lucky ones a video game and the homemade card done by your kids. But know it's not even about the present you may or may not get. It's the acknowledgment of a job well done.
Happy Father's Day, Gentlemen. I raise my hand with drink and salute you all.