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Jessica Wiant

Dads getting honor

I wish I could really know what it's like to be a dad. Just for a day. It'd be a neat experiment.

If I were the daddy in my household it might mean sleeping though more bad dreams or late night requests for water.

It would mean doing a lot less laundry, to be certain.

These days, it would mean sitting down to supper and not worrying about what will become of the dirty dishes.

It would mean never sitting down to write a grocery list or trying to decide what to have for lunch.

It'd also mean not dealing with a toddler who refuses to nap, or the heartburn that hangs around pretty much constantly 30 weeks into pregnancy.

If I set my mind to it, I can think of plenty of advantages of being the father of a family.

And this is coming from a mother of one, soon to be two boys. I'm a woman who, as a girl, was never afraid to handle a frog, ride my bike through the mud, or engage in a game of full-contact football.

I'm not exactly the most motherly person I know, or the most feminine. Still, I take on so many of those roles as the mother of my husband's children that I can be envious of what seems like, at times, an easier road for the dad.

But, the cool thing is, my husband also performs plenty of duties that I appreciate getting to avoid. He takes down the trash -- and puts up with me nagging him to do it.
He mows the grass.

He helps our son work out all his extra energy at the end of the day with a game of basketball, baseball or even countless foot races across the length of the yard.

He's the reason our son can identify more varieties of construction equipment than I can.
He's the pinch hitter when I really need a break but our son needs a few more bedtime stories.

He's the man who helped our son snag his first catfish, who makes sure we survive when we attempt things like camping and hiking.

He helps our son learn and care about being being outside even on days when, left up to me, we'd be inside watching Disney.

Maybe in your family some of the roles are reversed. Maybe dad's the one to stay up late with the sick kids and mom hates cooking. Maybe it's grandma and grandpa who divide the duties, or two mothers, or two fathers.

Holidays like Father's Day, in my opinion, offer us an excuse to reflect on what each of the people in our lives have to add.

In the end, each person who loves us has something to contribute. I say, the more the merrier.

Dads take on different forms and different jobs in different families, but they all have something unique to offer.

Those of us who have a dad in our lives -- or who share a home and children with a partner who takes some of the heat off of being a parent (often at all the right times) -- should realize how lucky we are.

* Contact Jessica Wiant at jessicawiant@gmail.com


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