Thursday, November 20, 2008

Just Good Sense

Welcome to my blog, a public diary chronicling the joys and frustrations of writing for a living, and a few points of interest along my life's meandering journey.

I write inspirational stories about relationships that share wisdom and teach important moral and life lessons, stories in which the reader might find hope, guidance, rekindled affection and a reason to smile.

Please visit www.gregoryelang.com and click the red corner on the home page just beneath the “Projects” tab to learn more about what projects I may be working on.

Now on to today’s post~

I’m not usually a fan of billboards but it is time to make an exception. I saw this great billboard several times as Jill and I drove the highways last weekend - a dad asleep on a couch with his toddler daughter asleep on his chest, her cheek placed over his heart. The message: Have you been a daddy today? Wonderful!

Daddies never stop thinking about their daughters, and daughters never stop thinking about their dads. Daughters young and mature share a common desire for the company and comfort of their fathers. They want their daddies to take care of them, in different ways, perhaps, but to offer their fatherly love and comfort nonetheless. Daddies live to give that love and comfort to their little girls.

From my front porch I’ve watched dads walking the streets of the neighborhood with an infant asleep on his back, or running while pushing a stroller, complete with a child yelling, “Faster, faster, Daddy!” I’ve watched dads and children play Wiffle Ball, dive onto a water slide, and climb trees, all from the comfort of my wicker chair.

There are more young girls living in the homes in my neighborhood than there are boys; the dads I observe are more often enjoying those activities with their daughters than with sons. My daughters are among the oldest children who live nearby, and now and then a dad asks me for fresh ideas about what to do with his daughter when she grows up and tires of climbing trees.

“Take her to get a pedicure, and get one yourself,” I often say.

My recommendation is universally met with a little shock and a lot of disbelief.

“That’s women’s stuff,” is the most common response I hear.

“Precisely,” I say.

My point in suggesting a pedicure is simple. Little girls want to do everything little boys do, which plays right into dads’ hands. However, teen girls want to do what young women do, which nearly never makes sense to grown men.

I’ve had many a pedicure (please, no polish). I let the girls do my hair before we go out, help me select clothes and shoes, and give me a fashion make-over once in a while (once I inadvertently went to work wearing a pair of stick-on earrings, so be careful). I take them shopping, an excruciating experience for me because we cannot purchase anything until we have visited at least fifty stores, but I tag along with them without complaint. It makes them happy, which in turn, delights me as well.

Dads should understand the importance of making children feel special in ways that are meaningful to them. I know a father who has triplets; two daughters and a son. One can understand why the parents of multiples might elect to host only one birthday party, but that’s not how he does it. Each child plans their own party, and then he facilitates all three, one after the other on three different weekends. Each child gets to be his special person of the day. Believe me, they love it; I’ve seen their faces.

So, as you can see, being a good parent isn’t rocket science; it’s just good sense. Have you been a daddy, a good mom, today?

Well, I guess that’s enough for today. Thanks so much for visiting my blog. Now go out and hug somebody!

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