There are some things a Daddy can do like no one else. It used to annoy me that I would do exactly what Jon did only to get a much less enthusiastic response. I remember especially the devastating moment when Kieran, at five years old, excitedly announced, “Daddy just taught me to ride a bike!”
Never mind that I had spent five days in a row running breathlessly down the street hanging on to him. Never mind that I cried more than he did when he fell off and scraped his knee. None of that counted five minutes after Jon went off with him, gave him a shove on his new bike and called out, “Now pedal!” Daddy did in minutes what I could not in nearly a week of dashed hopes and tears.
Over the years, Jon has stopped doing some of these things because the kids have grown too big. Others he still does no matter how big they are or how much they think they don’t need them anymore.
Some Things Daddy Just Does Better (I’m not saying we moms can’t do them, but in our house, Dad just has a special knack):
- Give pony rides that rival a circus event.
- Carry toddlers on his shoulders for hours to give them a better view.
- Dance with his girls standing on his toes.
- Give the biggest, best bear hugs.
- Watch the same Disney movie over and over and over again.
- Tell jokes that make his kids laugh out loud.
- Come home to a chaotic mess and bring it peace.
- Make his daughters feel like they are the most special girls in the world with just one look.
- Be ridiculously goofy no matter who’s watching.
- Empower his son to treat all women with dignity and respect by seeing how Dad treats Mom.
- Teach his daughters what to look for in a man.
- Turn boys into men.
- Make his daughters feel beautiful, and loved, and treasured.
- Pass on an appreciation and respect for heritage.
- Make all of them feel safe in the worst of storms.
- Teach his children that nothing is more important than them–no job promotion, no amount of money, no “stuff”.
- Release them to become all they can be and encourage Mom to do the same–who otherwise might clutch them for dear life (of course, not yours truly ;)).
To those without a daddy like this here on earth, I believe you have One in Heaven who assures you that you are the “apple of His eye” (Zechariah 2:8) and that “He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)
To my own Daddy, thank you for showing me how to find someone like you. You will always be my greatest hero.
And to all dads, ones who have it good and ones who are struggling, thank you for trying to do what only you can. You are the most incredible man in your children’s lives, whether they say it or not. You may feel under-appreciated, but you are always needed.
Happy Fathers Day Every Day!
(This post was pulled from the archives and updated. See original article from June 2014.)