This is not only written for my dad, but for all the dads out there who aren’t the typical, everyday dads. The hands-on dad, the dad who goes on bike rides, the dad who watches his grandbabies. The dad who creates a legacy whether he realizes it or not.
The world needs more of you.
It’s not every day you get a dad who enters a diaper changing contest and comes in second place. Yes, that happened to my dad. He would take me up to the local mall to walk around and one of the stores was holding a diaper changing contest of all things. A dad with a baby was not the norm back in the late 80s when this happened. In fact, my dad was the only dad to enter the contest. Even though he didn’t come in first, he wowed all the moms in there and exemplified a man who wasn’t afraid to get down and dirty in the diaper changing business.
Many people would always praise my dad for being out with me, and it didn’t phase him. “Oh you’re babysitting today?” they would ask.
My dad always corrected them and said he was raising his daughter and not babysitting.
It wasn’t the norm back then, but it is good to see that nowadays a lot more men are taking a hands-on approach to fathering.
It’s not every day you get a dad who takes you on bike rides to the park, to get ice cream and even to school. Yes, I was that kid who wowed my first-grade class as I pulled up on the back of my dad’s bike before school one day.
“Your dad is the coolest!” my classmates would exclaim although I was super embarrassed since he always made me wear (what I felt like) were the flashiest helmets out there.
My dad was bike riding with me through the neighborhood before it was the cool thing to do. Now parents are always out there riding with the kids. I would love our bike rides up to King Kone so I could get a lime slush, and then we would hit the local music store. I like to think my dad started the bike riding trend. I look forward to creating similar memories for my kids as they grow up.
It’s not every day you get a dad who is involved with your school.
My dad became a lunch monitor since he worked afternoons and wanted to see me. My dad was always there for me even when his work hours made it almost impossible. He would always make it work no matter what. Again, I was quite embarrassed that my dad was the one opening literally every single student’s Capri Sun and putting my friends up against the wall.
It had its perks though, my friends and I were allowed to play on the big playground designated for fourth grade and up. My dad would also play guitar and sing to my class and read to us. He even went back and read to my first-grade teacher’s students for many years.
As a young girl, I didn’t really understand or appreciate why my dad was so involved, but now as a parent, I understand.
It’s not every day you get a dad who paints pictures, creates his own music, cooks amazing meals, and is an exceptional gardener. My dad is all of the above. This is why I didn’t grow up watching sports.
My dad has always been eccentric and artsy.
I remember the living room would be transformed into a recording studio, or the kitchen would be full of paint and the beginnings of something beautiful. Dinner was always homemade and ready to eat at any time throughout the evening. I even requested my dad write down all of his favorite recipes to give me since he is the type of cook who throws things together on the spot.
In the spring and summer, my dad’s hands were always planting, weeding, watering, and working on his exceptional garden. It was like heaven in our own backyard. No matter where my dad has lived, he has transformed each yard into something amazing. He has been on multiple garden walks and featured in the newspaper.
It’s not every day you get a dad who has the best life stories. My dad loves to embellish when he tells tales of his past, but it’s when people who know my dad tell stories about him that another layer of him is peeled back. I feel like I am always learning new facts about my dad and who he was and ultimately why he is the way he is today. Anyone who knows my dad knows he loves to tell the same stories and jokes over and over again. Sometimes I wonder if he forgets who he has told what to, but he still tells the story anyway. He likes to get a reaction out of people, and if there is one person who hasn’t heard something, he will be sure to tell it with as much passion and excitement as he did the first time.
It’s not every day you get a dad who wants to watch his grandsons and be involved.
My dad is so in love with my boys it is truly the sweetest thing. He will always stop by to see them or will watch them whenever asked. His car club friends can’t believe he can handle two kids at the same time, but again, this doesn’t phase him. He is a great Papa, and the boys adore him. Sometimes I have to remind my dad I am the parent. He is definitely that Papa who gives too many cookies and lets them stay up past their bedtime. He spoils the boys and they are blessed to have him.
There are too many reasons to share regarding why my dad is such a special person. My life definitely wouldn’t be the same if he wasn’t there to help shape me into the woman I have become. I feel very blessed to have the dad I do, and I don’t take that for granted. It’s not every day you get a dad you are proud to call your dad.
So, thank you dad for everything. You have never stopped being the greatest dad and I hope one day my sons feel for me the way I feel about you.
And to all of you not every day dads out there, thank you as well. For creating legacies that ripple from generation to generation. I see you, and I know your children do too.