It was a scary realization one night, when I laid in bed thinking about the recent conversations I’d had with my husband. They weren’t moments of I love you, or thank you, or look how happy we are.
They were barked orders to refill a sippy cup or handle the homework.
There were so many poetic things I wanted to say, but they got sidelined by exhaustion and rudimentary parental caveman grunts.
So, while I hate to think it takes an earmarked day of recognition to give me pause and gather my words, I think it’s worth it to say, on this very special day, all the things I mean to say, you know, while the kids are napping and I can put coherent thoughts together.
To Andy, father of three, from Brittany… Thank you for reminding me I’m good at this, even when I think I’m messing everything up and scaring our children for life, thank you for assuring me otherwise. There is no one else I’d rather fumble through parenthood with.
To James, father of two, from Amber… Dear Doty, I’m so glad that the nose I got to hold a baby’s questionably soiled bottom up to for a sniff test was yours. Thanks for surviving this crazy chaotic life with me and for holding us all together. We love you.
To David, father of one, from Becca… Remember how you told me that only moms changed girl diapers and dads changed boy diapers. That was a lie. I love you, but you have to start changing your daughter’s diaper.
To Mark, father of one, from Jeanette… There was nothing easy about how we got here. Well, the crying, now that was easy. Failed transfers and mental breakdowns. But, you were all in. One of the proudest moments of my life was hearing you called dad.
To B, father of one, from Daisy… Thank you for reminding me there is more than one good way to parent, and that all parents need to soak up family time and alone time to be the best version of themselves. And thank you for doing the dishes. (I hate dishes)
To Greg, father of four, from Mary-Lauren… We miss you more with each passing day. I see pieces of you in each of our children, and it makes me both sad and incredibly happy. Thank you for the signs, they keep us all going!
To Andy, father of two, from Jordan… Thanks for cleaning up the puke. I’m a sympathy puker, and you never make me feel guilty when I run out of the room holding my hands over my face.
What do you sometimes forget to say to the partner in your life?