Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Great Daddy

I've been pondering on this entry for a while. Initially, I intended to write about my Dad and how wonderful our relationship has been. But recent occurrences with different friends have me reflecting on fathers in general and so here it is.

Let me start by telling the world about my Daddy. He is the hardest working, most considerate, patient, humbled, giving man I know. He has always put his family first and pretty much everything he does in life is with his family in mind. He's not perfect as no one is, but I couldn't imagine a better Daddy in my biggest dreams. From teaching me to ride a bike, to spoiling me rotten with candy and treats, to almost quitting his job of 15+ years when they wouldn't give him a day off to attend my graduation, to the life lessons, and the support in all my many endeavors (financially and emotionally). Even now as an adult, he gives me relationship advice, keeps me humbled, and helps keep me on track when faced with difficult situations. There isnt a challenging decision that I make without consulting my father first. This man is and has always been the one man I can always count on without a doubt. Even when my parents separated in 1991 and my mother moved me to DE in 1994. He always did whatever possible to be a presence in my life. My father and mother didn't believe in the drama that typically comes from divorce and separation. They never legally divorced and remained friends up until my mothers passing in 2008. So he even kept his most important vows to my mother and tried to do right by her as the mother of his children. Even if it meant putting up with my mothers male friends, traveling wherever she moved to next to see his kids, getting us on every holiday and school break, not missing any monumental occasions in my life and always a phone call and car ride away if I needed him. Again, I'm not saying he's perfect but compared to current times my father is one of the best.

Being a parent and especially a father means so much more than just fulfilling financial obligations. With so many single parent homes it is disheartening to hear stories of "baby mama drama" or "dead beat daddy". Those parents don't exist in my world and shouldn't in anyone else's either. So where does it go wrong? I'm sure every set of parents can point fingers and list a million different things the other parent did that causes the drama. Unfortunately, more often than not the children are sitting by watching the arguments, screaming, fighting, pettiness, blaming, and name calling. Before you know it, a lifetime has gone by and those children become the adults who expose their children to the same drama and you have the pool of angry, resentful, disrespectful, bitter kids we see today. The sons don't know how to treat or talk to a lady with respect. The daughter have no clue what the definition of a good man is, so they go for anything. They have no values, no self respect, no foundation or wisdom from a strong family to lean on. Now, a strong family doesn't mean that mommy and daddy have to stay together. Another no-no in my opinion is staying together or getting married for the sake of a child. If you've exhausted all possibilities and cant make it work, its better to at least salvage your relationship as parents. Don't wear each other down so bad that you cant stand the sight of one another and constantly argue and give negative examples to your children. I don't have children but I have tons of nieces and I know that they soak up every little thing they see.

Now don't misunderstand what I'm saying. There are great mommies who unfortunately have kids with less than desirable men. This entry is about the Great Daddy, the ones who willingly partake in their child's life. The Dads that just want to do the right thing and be the best father they can be or even the father that their fathers never were. As women, we should take that into consideration. Yes... Its expensive as hell to raise a child but money isn't the only thing necessary to raise a child. Yes... it may burn you up inside to see him move on and start a relationship and/or family with another woman. Every child deserves to have both parents in their life whenever possible. Both parents involved, free of drama and the bitterness of the failed relationship. A mommy and a daddy that put the needs of the child ahead of their own. Now we are human and things don't always go as planned despite the best of intentions. But some parents know they're wrong and just don't care. Women denying Fathers the right to see their child because the child support is late. Women allowing your new boyfriend (who don't do nothing but sleep on your couch and eat your food) even attempt to take the place of the real father. Women that just can't get past their own hurt emotions and they do whatever possible to make hell for the good Dads. Cut it out ladies, just stop it! You're only hurting yourself and more importantly your children.

I'm so thankful to my mother for always allowing my Father to be a Daddy. Never getting the court system involved, never over exposing us to her boyfriend, and definitely always keeping the best image of my Daddy in the forefront. It takes two to tango and if both parents are focused on the most important factor... The child... There may be more children that grow into respectable, upstanding, decent adults and perhaps avoid history continuing to repeat itself.

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