My kids are so lucky to have such an awesome dad. Nerdguy takes care of all of us, and is truly here for us when we need him. His own father passed away when he was young, so he didn’t grow up with an ideal paternal role model. He could easily have been a cold or distant father. But instead he has this love of being a dad, and such a good heart, which he shows in so many different ways:
When I had a miscarriage at 13 weeks with our first baby, he screamed and cried right along with me – every bit as devastated as I was.
After Molly was born, and he stayed in the hospital with us, I was so tired that I often slept right through the crying (deep sleeper/terrible mother), but he always woke up right away. Even to this day he hears the kids long before I do. At night that is – during the day I hear all their plotting and hijinx. Molly was having trouble nursing at first, so I was pumping, and it’s actually quite alarming to wake up and have a man standing over your hospital bed holding out the cups of the breast pump begging you to wake up.
He has always been an equal opportunity diaper changer, and has never expected any kind of medal for doing it.
He used to treasure his Sunday afternoon snoozes with Molly on his tummy after church. As much as he teased that it was just so he could anchor himself down with a baby and not be able to do any housework, I knew that it was also about how much he loved to snuggle with her and have their special time.
We went for an ultrasound and found out we were expecting twins. Molly was just a toddler. When we went back out to the waiting room I was a stunned, nervous wreck and you could see it all over my face. Nerdguy on the other hand was grinning from ear to ear because he knew it would be okay.
When I was pregnant with the twins we took Molly away on vacation where I got violently ill with stomach flu and Molly had a diaper rash so bad that she required a bath with every screaming diaper change. He took care of us both even though he was scared, and got us home safely.
He took 3 months off work to help with the colicky twins who never slept. We slept in shifts, and he never complained about the lack of sleep.
When Maggie was diagnosed with autism we read the scary statistics about marriage survival rates, and heard anecdotal stories about “checked-out dads.” It’s apparently more common than not for dads to either be in denial about the special needs of their children, and refuse to participate in the therapies, or to decide it’s all too much and pull the ripcord on the parachute and bail on the family. I never had to worry because there is no doubt in my mind that he is in this for the long haul and he would do anything for his kids. He reads the books, comes to the appointments, and gets the parent training. I know this is not common because we have to train every new therapist to talk to him when they calland to expect him at the meetings. They always try to talk to me like I am the one who is going to follow-up on any of their suggestions. But then they learn. Nerdguy is an autism dad rockstar.
Nerdguy is a teacher, a cheerleader, and a coach. He worked with Molly’s DI team for hours to support them at the regional competition, and then he did it all over again when they went on to provincials. It was a thankless job, but he knew it meant the world to Molly so he never hesitated. He does science experiments with her for fun. He helps the kids with their homework and doesn’t lose his patience. I have no idea how. I tense up just seeing the zippy bags.
Happy Father’s Day to my husband – the incredible father of my children. I hope you know how special you are, and how much you are loved by all of us.
If you want to hop on over to BLUNTmoms you can read a post about the first moments that we saw our partners as “Daddy” – see if you can pick which one is mine!
While you are over there you can read the tribute that I wrote to my own father. I am lucky that I was raised by an amazing dad, who showed me what high standards I should have for the father of my own children. Thanks Dad, and Happy Father’s Day!
Happy Father’s Day to any dads who are reading this, and I hope you all enjoy the day today!