Fathers I have known…
So, it’s Fathers Day in the US and the blogosphere is inundated with posts about fathers and how awesome they are. It makes my heart truly glad to see such a celebration of fatherhood.
Fathers Day is always a difficult day for me. My father passed away 17 years ago. I miss him every day. Time does not heal all wounds.
I started writing a very love-filled post honouring both my father and my husband, but have decided instead to tell you some stories about them…
Fell asleep in a movie theatre during Bambi and snored LOUDLY. Was woken up, and fell asleep again… four times.
Ran late picking me up from swimming lessons, so I walked home (this was in the days before mobile phones). When I got home and my mother asked me where my father was, I said I didn’t know and he hadn’t shown up. Things did not go well for him when he eventually got home, panicked that I had been kidnapped.
Bought live crabs to cook up, poured them in the kitchen sink, then panicked when they started moving around and nipping him. He rang my sister and asked her to come over and deal with them. She did.
Chopped a portion of his thumb off while cooking, and instead of going to the hospital, decided he was going to try the old Indian remedy of sticking his open wound into turmeric powder. Yes. BURN.
Organised every Mothers Day party in our community, shooing away the mothers and getting all the fathers and kids together to cook and prepare at our house, every year of my childhood.
Caught me giving the finger to honking car drivers in a traffic jam in India out of the back window of an auto-rickshaw, and instead of getting mad, laughed and JOINED IN!
Would drag mattresses out onto our front porch in Summer so we could all sleep in the breeze, then would proceed to tell us all stories in the dark about his childhood, his eccentric family, or something he simply made up.
Sat me on his knee and told me stories, even when I was far too old for that.
Put my hand in my husband’s hand at our wedding, looked him in the eye, and said “now it’s your turn to take care of her”.
Walked up and down the hallway with a screaming baby at 2am for two hours, making train noises so I could sleep.
Loved being woken up by Godzilla when he was a little fella. Godzilla would wake up, sit on the bed next to him, peel open his eye and say “Way-gup [wake up] Dee!” (he called him Dee instead of Daddy).
Hung a baseball from a string on our front porch, then armed Godzilla and the TeenWolf with baseball bats at the ages of 1 and 3, then was surprised when one of them hit the other in the throat. Fortunately, no lasting damage was done.
Tied Godzilla to a rock at the age of around 2 to keep him safe when they went rock fishing with a friend on some cliffs. Told him it was a safety belt.
Killed a bull ant that was wandering around inside the house by splitting it in two. He got rid of the back end of the ant, then when the TeenWolf pointed out the head of the ant, he picked it up to throw it out. It bit him and drew blood. There was much shouting (on his part), and laughing (on our part).
Along with Godzilla, removed a monitor lizard from the skylight in our kitchen, while the TeenWolf and I stood on the sofas and directed the whole event.
Cleaned vomit (Godzilla’s, not mine) out of the inside of a car door while I threw the offending child into the shower fully clothed. That’s definitely not something he thought he’d ever do.
Got caught letting Godzilla (aged 12) drive our car up the driveway, immediately after saying “I hope your mother’s not at the top of the driveway, or we’re both in trouble”.
Regularly gets caught out saying yes to the TeenWolf when I’ve said no. Sigh.
Cancels meetings to take both boys to football/baseball/basketball games, or turn up for school performances or awards ceremonies.
Takes both boys for a walk, a ride, to play golf/tennis, or fishing EVERY weekend.
I don’t tell you these stories to diminish either of these wonderful men. Instead, it’s meant as a reminder that they’re human. They’re individuals. They’re often winging it as much as we mothers are. So celebrate them as wonderful fathers, and remember the men they are, as well as the role in the family they play.
Happy Fathers Day!