On Friday, I attended sports day at my children’s school and I was struck by the number of fathers who were in attendance. Some had clearly taken time off work and others took a half day rushing in half way thorugh.
I observed as one dad walked in slightly late and made the effort to make eye contact with his children and wave so they knew he was there. I watched as alpha males around the field were screaming their child’s name with the gusto of olympic porportions. I think those dads were visualising themselves there actually. 😀😀😀😀 And then there were those whose children weren’t as athletic yet screaming their names like the champions they were and cheering them on to finish the race. And the father who was busy taking prized pictures, capturing every moment. And the ones who kissed their sons or daughters at the end with proud beaming smiles.
We often hear about the fathers who don’t do their share. And the ones who abandon their children. The ones who treat parenting as the responsibility of women and grace their families with their occasional presence. The media is ever ready to share countless stories about these men and the inequality amongst men and women in the home.
Don’t get me wrong, there is still a lot of inequality but there are more dads who are sharing in parenting than ever. They are the ones you see at the school run. Taking time off for school trips. Taking charge of dinner, even if it’s bought. Taking their kids to the park on their own. Or in the supermarket doing the shopping. Or at the doctor’s when a child is sick. They do not think that parenting is the preserve of their wives or partners. They contribute. Dads who are fully engaged in the lives of their children; who want to be there and not coerced. Who do not measure themselves by the ability to provide but being a positive role model for their children. Who enjoy the company of their children. Thank God for those dads.
Today I celebrate those dads. The world needs more of you.