I’ve spent the last nearly four weeks husband-less. Though this occurred by choice, it was a choice made out of necessity. I know a month is a drop in the bucket for military families (God bless you all!) and an even smaller drop for those who have lost their spouses (God bless you even more). But, it’s been a tough month for us.
I could go on and on and on about how much I’ve missed my husband and how important it is to appreciate and recognize all he does for me on a daily basis; how we, as wives, need to treasure our other half and realize that, yes, without him, you really are incomplete and don’t function as well.
Those things are very true, but the hardest part about my husband being gone has not been because I miss him (though I have, terribly), but because I miss him being with our children. I miss my other half, but I really miss the other half of our parenting team. So, with Father’s Day on the horizon, I thought I’d take a minute to mention some of the things that Dad brings to the household – things that I’ve always known, but that have become glaringly obvious while the father of my children has been away.
(None of these are things that a Mom can’t and doesn’t bring to the family, too. But, they are things that Dads really bring in a special way.)
Dad Brings Laughter & Joy
My kiddos and I laugh and play lots. But, Dad has an uncanny way of bringing out the belly laughs. He’s got the best timing when it comes to physical comedy (something I’m not as good at) – no one else can do the silly sneeze, tickle the right spots, or make crazy noises and faces like Dad can. It’s a lot funnier when Dad plays dress-up than when Mom does.
Dad Plays Rough
Dad will wrestle you, throw you onto the pillows, toss you in the air. He’ll let you go too close to the edge and sometimes let you fall down without trying to stop you. Dad shows that he has the power most of the time, but he’ll let you knock him over and stand on his back, just so you think you won ONE round.
Dad Goes on the Adventures
From building forts out of cushions or in the backyard to tents made out of sheets on the bed to galavanting about the yard looking at bugs or hiking through the woods to the creek, where Dad goes, adventure follows. Sometimes the adventure is racing cars around the kitchen floor or sliding down the stairs in a sleeping bag. Dads pump up the volume and raise the adrenaline. And, incidentally, he’s great at wearing the kids out with these things!
Dad is the Security
Mom brings her own brand of security to the table – comfort, gentleness. But, Dad makes a kid feel safe. His presence guarantees that going to bed in your room is okay because no bad guy or monster can get past him. Dad will keep you safe in a storm or hug you tightly when something frightens you. His hands are big and they have a firm grip that shows he’s in control.
Dad Brings Love
Dad loves in a way that Mom doesn’t. Dad’s love comes through a special kind of strength, discipline, and providing for the family. It also comes from kissing on his babies, rocking them gently, and reading them stories. He loves them by paying attention to them first thing when he gets home from work and not tuning them out for the TV or iPad.
I’ve seen first hand how these things missing from the Dad of our household have made things a little tougher on our children. They aren’t missing entirely, of course, but they don’t come about in nearly the same way or as often as they do when Dad is around.
Needless to say, Dads bring a lot of important things to the family – not just a paycheck or someone who takes care of the yard. I know my little household is incomplete without our father and we can’t wait for him to get home in just a few days. This year’s Father’s Day will be the best yet as we laugh, roughhouse, go on an adventure, and ultimately, feel safe and loved when Daddy is back under our roof.