I say it all the time. How lucky I am, how lucky the boys are. Andrew is an exceptional father. I don’t know if fathers are born or made, or a combination of the two… because though Andrew had many father figures in his life, his own father was not there to raise him in the day-to-day sense. And yet, Andrew is an amazing father.
He talks to Milo and Oliver and really explains things. He is patient. He is not afraid to say “no,” but tries to say “yes” more often. He plays with his boys, and reads to them, and sings to them. He is the soundtrack to their lives. He swings and chases and bathes and feeds. He gets up every morning with them and encourages them to play quietly instead of plopping them down in front of the computer to watch a video. He teaches them how to be good men. He teaches them how to be assertive, how to be gentle, how to respect adults and each other.
I think the most wonderful thing in the world is a father who teaches his boys how to nurture. The very fact of Andrew doing the lion’s share of parenting in the early morning and often the evening shows his boys that men are just as good at childcare as women. In essence, he is teaching them how to be fathers some day, should they choose to be. How to be firm but kind. How to play. How to explain. How to eat healthfully. How to save money. How to work hard and enjoy each day.
Let it be known, there are some pretty crappy dads out there.
… dads who completely ignore the requests of their children to “Watch me, Dad!” because they are too busy on their smartphones checking the latest whatever. Dads who reply in exasperation, “I don’t need to look because I’ve already seen you do that a million times” without looking up from their phones. Dads who actually lie down on the park bench out of complete boredom to escape the torture that is watching their children play. Dads who leave their four-year-olds in the playground while they go have a rest somewhere else out of sight or earshot for at least the amount of time it would take for someone to snatch a child and take off. Or for the child to wander away. Or have a really bad spill. Yep. There are some really crappy dads.
Thanks, Andrew. For being more than “not crappy.” For being amazing.