This feels like Dan’s first Father’s Day, we hardly celebrated the day last year as we were still very much in the frazzled newborn haze. I managed to organise a card for him but I think that’s where the festivities began and ended. So this year I want to do it properly, I want him to know how much we appreciate his hard work and commitment to his role as Darcie’s Daddy. So this ones for you Dan, maybe this will be the first of my posts that you read to the end…
I know that I’m biased but I don’t think there could be a better little girl to be a Daddy to than our Darcie May, she deserves the very best and luckily you step up to the mark. I know you doubt your ability as a Father, the way that we all sometimes struggle to feel comfortable in our new role as parents, but how can you doubt yourself when you see how she is with you? When you see how ecstatic she is when you walk through the door after work? When you hear her say ‘Dadadada’ over and over again to get your attention or to acknowledge your presence.
You’re a great Father for the things that you don’t see too. You’re a great Father for the fact that once she has had her dinner she just wants to stand in the window waiting for you to come home. For the fact that she will crawl around the house quite obviously looking for you, hoping you’ll appear to chase her while she sprint-crawls away from you chuckling.
You were a great Father even before she was born, I bought you those ‘Best Daddy in the World’ socks for a reason. I find it hard to imagine how it feels to be an expectant Father, for me I could feel her presence constantly. She wriggled for me everyday, everywhere I went I had her with me, my little companion and even though I had never seen her face I felt I knew her entirely just from her funny little movements. The particular times of day she was likely to get hiccups and the way she would always be extra squirmy when I drank Chocolate Milk. It must have been hard for you to feel as connected to her as I did, but you like to be fully involved in everything and you didn’t disappoint when you took a full and complete interest in my pregnancy and her development. You didn’t miss a single appointment, scan or ‘how not to screw up being a parent’ class. I nicknamed you ‘the pregnancy police’ because you were so viligant in your role of taking care of our unborn child and I. I joked that it was stressful ‘living with the pregnancy police’ but I wouldn’t of had it any other way. You were a great Father even then, by looking after me you were looking after her. Everytime you reminded me to rest or to eat, you were doing all you could to be the best Daddy you could be to her at that time.
When she arrived you were an endless source of comfort and support for us both. You helped me as I struggled with breastfeeding, knowing that it was important to me to succeed and important for her to get the nutrients she needed. You took the night shift when I was more tired than I knew was humanly possible. You stayed up all night only waking me when she needed a feed, watching David Attenborough with her, and then in the morning you would proudly tell me how she had liked the frogs or disliked the lizards. When you went back to work after Paternity Leave you fully took on board the role of ‘sole earner’, you work harder than anyone I know and I will never stop being grateful for the fact that you enable me to stay at home with Darcie.
I know you’ll continue to be a great Father too. We joke that you’ll never allow her to have a boyfriend and I know that right now you’re reading this and saying ‘I’m not joking’ but I love that you’re so protective of her. You were thrilled to have a girl, a little girl to be ‘Daddy’s Little Princess’ and you have taken the role of protector seriously from the moment you first held her in your arms. I’m sure that as she grows up there will be times that she wishes you weren’t so protective of her but I will always be thankful that my daughter has a Father like you. Someone to pick her up from wherever she need at 3am, someone to wait up until you know she is safe, someone that will love and cherish her no matter what direction she chooses in life.
Every time you ring from work just to see how our day is going or every time we race up the stairs after her naptime to be the first one she sees through the door, I’m reminded of how lucky we both are to have you. You’re the Daddy that actually builds the treehouse, and it means so much to me and to everyone who loves our daughter that you are the way that you are.
That’s the soppiness over so now I’d just like to deflate your ego and remind you that there is always room for improvement. Do the dishes more often, take your turn with bedtime and for the love of god stop leaving your dirty socks on the stairs and then maybe I won’t trade you for a newer model.
Enjoy your day, you deserve it Daddio.