Pampers honors dads and thanks them for all the things we do to help little ones have a better, loving, and more fulfilling life. As a parent who has consistently used Pampers products for my two children, it is an honor to write about the joys and challenges of fatherhood. More than anything, I am thankful for the precious time I have with my children.
Right now, it’s time to pick up my two beautiful daughters from school. It’s a routine that I have grown to love over the years. Every weekday, I drive my truck through the tightly packed lot to find a suitable space. Once I find that space, I turn the ignition off.
I close my eyes for a few moments, savoring the silence in this moment and slowly transition myself back into “dad mode”. I’ve conquered a 65 mile round trip to and from work and finished an eight hour work day as the Emergency Manager for a local city government. Part of my job is to help 30,000+ residents prepare, avoid, and respond to emergency situations – and although my job title and responsibilities are a little different at home, they both carry a high level of importance in my mind.
I take a few moments to control my breathing, release any past anxiety from the day, and mentally prepare to spend the remainder of the afternoon and evening with my daughters. I leave while they are still asleep every morning and miss them dearly throughout the day. It is a magical reunion every time I see them.
When I blast through the classroom doors, time stops for a moment. Their eyes lock with mine and I watch a huge toothy smile envelop their tender faces. They recklessly abandon all current activities and haphazardly dash through and around the maze of children and toys scatterd on the floor. I scoop each one up and throw them up into the air, mere inches from the ceiling. I catch them softly, and surround them with a loving hug and a gentle kiss on the cheek. I know they won’t always be this happy to see me, but in the meantime I will savor it.
After our daily greeting, my daughters take me on the daily tour of their classroom, where I get to see the projects they’ve worked on while showering them with positive affirmations and compliments. Every day, I take at least moment to thank and hug the loving teachers who served as in loco parentis for a large part of the day.
If time permits, I’ll stick around for a while, sometimes sitting at the art table making pictures with the kids. Other times, I’ll read a story to the girls and whoever else wants to listen. I try to take the time to give the kids a smooth transition from school to home. Out time together is never rushed and if my daughter wants to take her project home, we will take it home – even if its still dripping with layers of wet paint.
In addition to the laundry list of skills, abilities, and talents I want my children to obtain. I want my daughters to be comfortable being assertive and expressing themselves. If they can’t be assertive with me as her dad, they may not be able to later do it with a male supervisor, future boyfriend, or anyone else. As a father there are times when I simply need to receive my daughters anger and assertiveness rather than punish her for it.
Below is a part of an actual conversation we recently had during our drive home one evening:
Me: “I love the way you stand up and advocate for yourself. ”
My daughter: “Daddy, I am NOT a cake! I am a GIRL! Ok?”
Me: “You are absolutely right….and you are smart, talented, and kind!”
My daughter: “ Yes I am! Thank you very much daddy!”
This love for your children comes with its challenges and despite best efforts, things stall at times. Parenthood is sometimes a wild roller coaster full of fun and fear, and other times it is more like a rocking chair- There’s a lot of moving, but not always a lot of progress.
Based on what you see on TV, it is easy to assume that the entry into fatherhood will be easy and full of fulfillment. That much is true at least some of the time. However, each stage in your child’s evolving development brings new surprises and uncertainties that create doubt, bewilderment, and sheer confusion to you as a parent. What worked so well yesterday may not work today, because children grow cognitively, emotionally, socially, and physically every day. In short, it is rare that everyone is happy at the same time.
There’s also a pressure to provide the best of everything for your children. From the best education to the most beautiful home, every parent want their kids to have it all.
With my wife, we’ve worked intelligently and consistently at creating income and supporting a financially viable and comfortable lifestyle. However, spending time with the children is always the highest priority! Work will always come second to the needs of our children.
Also- don’t forget about the precious moments that money can’t buy– the snuggling past bedtime, the spontaneous dance offs, the unplanned road trips, and the fun moments spent together working on crafts and coloring books.
When a baby is born, a dad is born. That’s one of the main reasons why my website is entitled, Birthed Into Fatherhood. This Father’s Day, Pampers has done much to celebrate that incredible feeling little ones bring to the hearts of dads through unconditional love.
For more than 50 years, moms and dads have trusted Pampers to care for their babies’ happy, healthy development. Pampers offers a complete range of diapers, wipes and training pants designed to provide protection and comfort for every stage.
Pampers has released a new #ThanksBaby video that captures the amazing relationship that is created between a dad and his baby when a baby is born and the beautiful journey of fatherhood begins.
Please feel free to join me by tweeting why you are most thankful for baby with the hashtag #ThanksBaby
Visit www.pampers.com to learn more about Pampers products, join the Pampers Rewards program, and find ideas and information to help your baby get the most out of love, sleep and play.