You are busy, we see:
Busy on your computers and those tiny screens in your hands––writing the important words which others will read;
Busy in the yard––mowing the grass where we play tag;
Busy in the home––fixing, always fixing;
Busy at your jobs––earning the money that will help pay for our soccer uniform;
And busy at the kitchen table––listening and sharing with our other parent at the end of each and every day. We can sense it gets hard. We can see it in the peppery gray hairs that nestle just above your ears and the lines around your eyes that crinkle even after the laughter has stopped.
Dearest Dads, as you move like mighty street sweepers through the duties of your days, your daughters want you to know that we are always here, quietly watching your every choice, your every encounter in the home, and the outside world.
From you, we are learning how to be kind to ourselves and to our neighbors, how to work hard and do no harm, how to apologize when wrong, how to strive for a balance of knowledge and patience, and how to love and be loved.
And when the learning is done, we wait for that ecstatic moment when you turn your eyes to us, pull us close, tickle our tummies until we scream, and then together, we become: Jedi Knights! Princess and King! Aladdin and Jasmine!
“Again, Dad – again!”
We set up our dolls and play tea and cupcakes – “No Dad, not that one, the small one is for you!”
We make Flubber. We make paper airplanes. We walk the dog and throw the Frisbee. We make chocolate chip cookies and eat all the batter. We learn the names of the planets – “What’s the one after Jupiter? I keep forgetting…” We learn to play chess – “Just took your Queen, Dad! Silly Dad!”
So please, keep doing what you’re doing. You’re kicking ass, Dads! No generation of men in history has ever been this involved, this aware, and this close to parenting greatness. We love you.We thank you.
The writer, Amber Power and her stepdad, Gus, at the local roller rink, 1985.
"My dad was a cowboy through and through. This picture commemorates the first (and last) time he ever put roller skates on his typically-booted feet. It also happens to be just one of the millions of instances when he put his daughter's joy above his own. He was the greatest."
"The father I never knew, My heart breaks for us both, I wish we had known each other, we seem very similar."