Sunday, June 17, 2007

A message for my kids

Dear Kids:

Today is Father's Day and so I am going to tell you a little bit about your dad. You may think you know all about him, but you don't, not really. You probably don't realize yet what a wonderful father he is, but I hope you will someday. I don't have a great relationship with my dad: he has a lot of problems that he's never worked out and it stopped him from being the best dad he could be. It makes me more happy than you can understand to know that you are experiencing a completely different kind of fatherhood than I did.

Before Daddy and I got married, I wasn't even sure I wanted to have kids. I didn't know how I was going to combine having kids and being a lawyer, and I wasn't sure I would be able to be the kind of mom I wanted to be. Daddy and I talked about it, and he said, "Of course we have to have kids. What else is there?" And he said, "You'll be a great mom. Anybody who loves their cat as much as you do can't help but be a great mom." His complete certainty and confidence about it helped me work through my doubts.

You probably have heard me talk about hard it was for me to get pregnant. Daddy and I went to the doctor a lot to find out if they could help us. Daddy never complained, even when they did icky tests and took blood. He went with me when I had icky tests and had to give blood. And when we went through the second round of tests after J. was born, he would make sure he was around to take J. to school or pick him up, even though he has a demanding job, in order to make sure I didn't have to worry about it. Once again, when I had doubts and wondered if things would ever work out, Daddy's quiet confidence made me feel better.

And now you are here. You don't realize it yet, but your dad is an amazing father. He was there when you were born and even when the doctors took ultrasound pictures of you before you were born. He has changed your diapers, cleaned up your puke, fed you, hugged you, read to you, and regularly gets down on the floor to play with you. He plays pretend games with stuffed animals and talks in a high squeaky voice to make you laugh. He teaches you things, like letters and how to pet the bunny gently, and yells at you when you do stuff wrong to make you a better person. He believes you can do anything in the world you want to. He goes to your Little League games and your school conferences. He insists on having holidays at our house so we can make them happy, stress-free times. He nags you to brush your teeth and wash your face so you don't have cavities and zits. He works long hours at a job that doesn't thrill him sometimes, so you can live in a nice house and go to a good school and have all things you need and most of the things you want. Sometimes he comes home from work in time to have dinner with us, only to go upstairs and work into the wee hours at night, because he'd rather work upstairs after you're asleep than stay late at the office and miss putting you to bed each night. He doesn't complain (much) about how little sleep he gets, or how little time to himself he gets, or how we don't travel very often, or how he can't buy expensive stuff for himself the way he used to.

Today is Father's Day, and I wanted to try to make you understand how special a dad you have. I hope when you get older you will be able to, and I hope when you get older you will be parents that are as kind, attentive, gentle and there (physically and emotionally) as your dad is. So let him sleep in today. Give him extra hugs and kisses and tell him you love him.

Because he's one in a million gazillion.

12 comments:

no-blog-rachel said...

Awww..you found a good one. And it sounds as if you're as good a mom to your kids as your husband is a dad.

Robin said...

What a wonderful tribute to your husband. Happy Father's Day to him!

Kathy Merrick said...

Yikes I'm tearing up.
I only wish I could have written a tribute like that for JBoy.
Oh well.

mindy said...

That was one of the most beautiful things I have ever read. I hope he has a wonderful Father's Day (and you, too, because it's obvious you two make a perfect team).

Bridget said...

Happy Father's Day to your husband! Because he sounds like one of the best.

(I mean honestly, he's put up with you, hasn't he??)

anne marie in philly said...

VERY nice tribute to tom!

my father was NEVER like this. I dare say my old man should never have become a father.

hope your kids read this for many years to come.

Ann said...

Beautiful.

Marilyn said...

I can't think of a more thoughtful, loving tribute to Tom than this. There's something so wonderful about your slavish devotion to husband. When they're great fathers, too, slavishly devoted is the only way for you to be. 'Cause there's a ton of asswipes out there.

Happy belated Father's Day, Tom. And thanks for being such a non-asswipe. C's friends love you for that...and your primo sense of humor.

the hanged man said...

I can't tell you how happy I am that things have worked out for you, Carol. Because if there's anyone who deserves a good husband, it's you.

Your kids probably already know this, but their dad is also smart and funny - two very good traits to have.

Sherry W said...

He's a cutie too, if you don't mind me sayin'. Plus he even brings Black Bunny to Rosies. :)

Anonymous said...

No fair! How can you make me cry at 6:30 in the morning? .... What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful guy. May your family be around to love and protect and enjoy one another for many, many years.

Cal said...

Damn. Must have got something in my eye!

Beautiful. Wonderful. And should be compulsory reading for every father.