Earlier this week on one of our trips to the grocery store, I allowed my oldest two kiddos to choose a card for their daddy for father’s day. (a $6 card mind you, what is the world coming to?!) My husband and I aren’t huge on gifts for eachother but I love to write down for him what the kids appreciate about him, especially since they are so genuine at these ages and the time they spend with him is so very special to them. When we got home, we sat down at our kitchen table, got a pen out and I asked them what they thought was so special about their daddy. I contemplated having my second grader write, but I didn’t want this to take an hour, or 25 sheets of paper, so I just did it. 😉 We don’t tell my husband enough what we appreciate about him and he’s an excellent daddy to our 3 babies. I feel like pretty often, he comes home from work and the kids seem to all want his attention at once which turns into one of them becoming a bit frustrated and then before you know it we are eating dinner then preparing for bed time. It was just as good for the girls and I to sit and discuss what we appreciate about him as it will be for him to read it I”m sure!
Now, my children are normal. They love getting new toys, they are stinkers every once in awhile. But it amazes me every time we do something like this what comes out. It’s not that their daddy buys them things. It’s not that he works his butt off each day so that we can be blessed with the home we have, the food in our fridge, the clothing on our backs and the vehicles we drive. They could care less if we had do downsize our house and be a family with one vehicle. They would get used to it if we didn’t ever go out to eat and had to live on a super strict budget. As a matter of fact, I think absolutely everything on that list is free. Daddies are so very important to children especially little girls. They teach their little ladies how they should expect to be treated by a husband and show their little men how to treat a wife one day. It’s a huge task. I’m not here to tell you my husband is the best (nor am I) but that being a good mommy and daddy is something that takes constant work. It takes diligence; prayer, spending time with good friends who you can ask for advice, those you can just be around and soak up what they are doing with their children and use it. It takes apologizing to your spouse and your children, giving yourself a break, and stopping often to realize what matters, reading Bitty Baby books and helping to find turtles in the deep down river.
I’m so appreciative of the fact that I was blessed to grow up with an amazing daddy so I knew exactly what to look for in a husband one day. I can’t remember a time growing up when my dad wasn’t outside playing catch with me, coaching me, teaching me, spending time with me (my love language). He set high expectations and I was an extremely strong willed child so I was determined to meet them. There wasn’t a second that I didn’t doubt he loved me or my brother and I was positive that when he was absent he was working hard to support our family because that was his personality and it still is today. The man is battling cancer and people hardly know it because he never complains. He’s a rockstar. I’ll never forget being in high school and he was my coach and I was upset after a game because he was giving me constructive criticism and him saying to me “Jami you’re better than them, if I didn’t care about you, I wouldn’t tell you any of this but you’re better than that”. And he was right. I was better than that and I”ll never forget him telling me that. Good fathers know the balance between love and discipline, they care enough about you to not try to be your friend but to teach you so that you can can grow. They realize they are training children and their job is of great importance. This weekend is to you daddies. I hope you know how incredible you are!
“Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
“In a study examining father involvement with 134 children of adolescent mothers over the first 10 years of life, researchers found that father-child contact was associated with better socio-emotional and academic functioning. The results indicated that children with more involved fathers experienced fewer behavioral problems and scored higher on reading achievement. This study showed the significance of the role of fathers in the lives of at-risk children, even in case of nonresident fathers.”