Family · Running

To the Dads

My friend Emily (the triathlete, remember?) lost her dad two weeks ago. I can’t even imagine how she and her family feel or what they are going through; I am in awe of the strength and perspective she has displayed.

Perspective: so easy to forget, and so often, unfortunately, re-gained only when we or someone close to us faces a loss. Emily’s loss has given my own perspective a swift kick in the rear with regard to a group of people far too often taken for granted: dads.

When I ‘m driving around, I think “What if Dad hadn’t been there to help me research and shop for a new car?” When I’m out running, I think “What if Dad hadn’t been there to introduce me to this, one of the true loves of my life?” As I’m writing this very blog post, I think “What if Dad wasn’t there to encourage my writing?”

I’m blessed beyond measure with a fantastic dad. I’m also blessed to know lots of other fantastic dads – my brothers and friends who have become dads; the ones I feel like I know through stories my friends, like Emily, have told me; and ones I’ve merely read about, but deserve recognition nonetheless.

That said, I’d like to propose a toast, or a simple moment of appreciation, to all the great dads out there and the things they do.

Here’s to the dads…

– Who change diapers.

– Who help with the 2 a.m. activities babies seem so fond

– Who stand on the sidelines of a race their wife is running, and help a toddler(s) hold up a huge sign that reads “GO MOMMY.”

– Who play with their kids.

– Who get their kids involved in some sort of athletic activity at a young age.

– …and who are athletic/active themselves, setting an example.

– Who patiently read the same bedtime story every night for weeks on end [to my own Dad: remember The Monster at the End of This Book?].

– Who help with kitchen table/eat-your-vegetables discipline.

– Who take their kids to places of historical significance.

– Who attend all of their kids’ sports games, recitals, school plays, etc.

– Who take their kids camping.

– Who take their kids on college tours in high school.

– Who teach their kids how to work a grill.

– Who tell their daughters they look pretty.

– Who show their sons how to treat women.

– Who tell stories…and possibly the best jokes ever.

– Who help with dinner (and yes, opening a bottle of wine or fetching your wife a beer most certainly does count as helping with dinner).

– Who tell their kids they’re proud of them.

– Who remember to take pictures, even when we roll our eyes.

– Who unfalteringly give their kids guidance and emotional support, no matter how old those kids get.

Here’s to you guys. Let’s all raise a glass, shall we? And remember what you appreciate about your dad.

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9 thoughts on “To the Dads

  1. Great post. I lost my dad 19 years ago, but it seems like yesterday. I miss him, but I am thankful for the time we had and the things we did together. Dad’s are SO important.

  2. Thanks for this. My dad suffered a stroke two weeks ago and as I read this I am sitting at the end of his hospital bed waiting for him to wake up so we can start another day of his journey back to a normal life.

    My condolences to Emily.

  3. I ran in the rain this morning, and then popped open my laptop, then read your words. I’m not a dad, but as an uncle I do many of the things you described. Very thoughtful perspective on your part. Best regards to you and your friend Emily.

  4. Beautifully written!!!

    Hits all the right buttons!!!

    Yes you do have a great DAD.

    Joe Medeiros

    ________________________________

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