HAPPY FATHER’S DAY TO ALL THE AMAZING DADDIES, PAPAS, ETC OUT THERE!!! I HOPE YOU ALL HAD AN AMAZING DAY!
What an amazing feeling to wake up Sunday morning to text messages and voice mails full of Father’s day wishes for Tony and I. We have already written about how this is something that we have always dreamt of, wished for, and never thought was possible for us. Even though we are technically only “fathers to be”, I got up early and made Tony breakfast. When he came off shift we had breakfast and laughed and joked about what this day would be like for us in the future.
It also made me start thinking about my own child and growing up without a father. I remember that they used to have these “Daddy Days” at school, where all the dads would come and have lunch with their kids. I remember the first one I ever had to endure was when I was in first grade. I was a MESS about it for weeks prior to the event. I never said anything to anyone about how scared I was to be the only kid there without a father. I remember that day clearly as the dads were filing into the room and I could hear all the excited chatter of my classmates. I just stared at my desk praying to turn invisible and trying so hard not to cry. Then I felt this hand on my head ruffling my hair. I looked up to my uncle smiling down at me. He was already my idol, but that day he became my hero. He showed up to every school play, baseball game, every milestone. He was always there for me no matter what, and I loved him deeply. He died almost three years ago and I miss him every day.
My uncle Randy and I, he was the first to hold me, and he never let go.
My dad is not my biological father. He and my mother fell in love when I was 16. He and I butted heads as only two males trying to assert their dominance can. I was not at all pleased at being replaced as the man of the house. He and I disagree about almost everything and sometimes he drives me completely crazy, as I am sure I do him as well. However, he always shows up. When I have a flat tire at 2 a.m. in a rain storm, he is there to change it for me. Almost 6 years ago, when I finally decided to get clean and sober, I had a really rough detox. My dad is the one who sat with me. Every day. He watched over me as I fought to get rid of the toxins in my body. He stood outside of the bathroom door as I threw up, and then handed me a glass of water and helped me back to bed. He teared up and clapped his hands as I graduated, first from rehab, and later from college. It is his face I see in my mind’s eye lighting up the first time this baby says “Grampa”.
I found my biological father a couple years ago and finally got the answers to questions I have had for my entire life. He is a very nice man, but what I realized in meeting him is that the one thing I had been looking for I already had. My dad. The man who loves Ronald Reagan, the Republican Party, and who drives me crazy is also ½ of my biggest support team. My parents. I love him and he loves me; even though you would never be able to tell if you were in the same room with us. We tease each other mercilessly, but it is all out of love.
My dad and I at my college graduation party.
When our child is hurt, or sad, or mad, or glad I will draw upon the memories of these two men, my uncle and my dad, and know exactly how a father should handle the situation. I will be the best father I possibly can because of them. And for that I am so beyond grateful.
Happy Father’s Day I love you both.