(I’m postponing Mama Mondays post until Wednesday. I’ll call it “Whatta I do Wednesday”.)
On Saturday we celebrated Fathers Day because you were going to have to work all day on Sunday. I asked you what you wanted to do to celebrate and suggested that you have some time alone in the house. Your idea was mowing the lawn, having lunch with me and the kids, and spending the afternoon at the house, just hanging out. I’ll admit that I probably would never suggest celebrating Mothers Day by engaging in a rousing round of washing dishes, but that’s just the crazy guy you are. This is our tenth year with the mom and dad titles (although I personally am making them call me mommy FOR-EV-ER), and like in any job, there’s been a learning curve, but I am grateful to have you as my teammate because I’ve learned that there are multiple things I just can’t do. I know if you weren’t here, the Lord would provide for us and fill in the gaps, but I wanted to take a minute to tell you the things our kids would be missing if I didn’t have you.
Knowledge of pop culture- I’m sorry that I still can’t really tell you who “Legolas” is. I know he’s in that movie with the giant spider but come on, that movie is 17 hours long, so no one understands the plot. Without you, our kids would be able to quote every line from The Princess Bride, but would never know Indiana Jones or Anniekin. They would refer to sad moments as “this is totes Beaches”, but sadly would never know anything about why Frodo might choose the red pill over the blue. I realize that knowing that George Michael will never musically top his Wham! days is important information for the growing mind, but without you, their little ears would not enjoy the mulleted musings of a young Steven Curtis Chapman. They’d never know Michael W. Smith and without that, who knows what direction they’d go in? It could be west, but that’s not a chance we need to take!
Dishwashing how-to- its entirely possible that without you, I’d just throw dishes in the dishwasher until it looked like it needed to close. I mean, it all gets the same soap and water, right? No need to pay attention to where they are supposed to go! The utensil drawer is just a suggestion! And I also realize that I am a smidge more “liberal” when it comes to what can and can’t go into the dishwasher. For you, a dinner plate needs to be rinsed and washed with some soap before being gently placed in the correct place within the complicated dishwashing grid. I think a plate housing a small mountain of spaghetti is probably okay to throw in there. Don’t worry- I checked the manual. (we both know that is a lie- I don’t read manuals). So without you, our kids would be breaking dishes and dishwashers willy nilly, and I’d be shaking my head and saying sympathetically to them “it’s okay. The manual said this could happen.”
The ability to shake it off- without you, our kids would probably be on a first name basis with the triage nurse at our local emergency room. I’m not saying am paranoid because I’M TOTALLY NOT WEBMD WOULD NEVER LEAD ME ASTRAY but I am saying that you are a good balance in knowing that a sneeze is probably not Belgium Nose Flu and that that one spot on under his arm is a freckle EVEN THOUGH IT LOOKS EXACTLY LIKE THAT ONE THING I SAW ON THAT ONE SHOW THAT ONE TIME. Because you are their dad, they dive headfirst into lake water without thinking about those amoebas that drift into your brain and make you start barking at cars, and they don’t check their shoes for baby cobras. Not that I do that. That’s crazy. It was just an example.
Leaving the house- In this modern world, there really isn’t much use for this. Need food? Home delivery service. Want to watch a movie? Hello Netflix. Education? On line classes! Human companionship? Skype, baby! But you are different, sweetheart. You like this “great outdoors” that you often speak of. While I could be content in my home, you make us get out into the sunshine and interact with the world. Thank you for that, because without you, our kids might end up on one of those shows where they have to bulldoze the house just to find the owner and forklift them out. I know because I watched that show today instead of having a playdate.
Aside from all these super important skills, our kids would not be nearly as kind, compassionate, selfless, generous, and loving if you weren’t their dad. Truly, our kids will know this someday, but right now they don’t know how blessed they are to be yours. And I would not be half the mom I even want to be without you. You encourage and sharpen me. You stand by my side and hold me up when it’s hard. You trust me and honor me. You bless me with your love for Christ. I love you.