Father’s Day Through the Eyes of a Single Dad
By Bob Minhas
When Masalamommas asked me to write this article, I really had to do some reflection on the topic. I really had to think about what my expectations would be for this coming Father’s day. And the more I reflected, the more I started wondering if I could even get something out.
Although technically it’s not my first Father’s Day as a Single Dad, it is my first going through one full year not living with my babies.
So I started thinking about previous Father’s Days. And I realized they were all amazing! A chance for me to sit back and let my beautiful kids and loving wife take care of everything for the day. I was allowed to sleep in, I was served a nice cold drink and even had my favourite meal made for dinner. The kids showered me with love and attention and quiet time too!
Father’s day as a single dad though will be very different. I see my babies once every week and every other weekend at the home I was married in. I don’t yet have a place of my own to host my kids and their Mother and I agreed form Day 1 of this separation and divorce that we didn’t want them to pack their bags every weekend to come see me. And when I do seem them, I do what I can to ensure they’re happy to see me. That they’re having fun. That they’re not bored. Because that’s what Desi dads do right? We spoil them when they’re young … let the Mommy-Folk take care of the discipline later.
I write that I do my best because I’m so fried from the workweek being a consultant and an entrepreneur that some days I can barely engage them. And when I hustle them off to bed and leave, I immediately regret what I missed doing when with them. Measuring myself against all the other amazing dads I read about on Facebook. Thinking how can I do better next time so I can get attention and recognition of being a great dad!
And now here comes a day to acknowledge that lackluster performance of a Father. A day that amplifies my true fear – That I am a fraud of a Father.
Google says: “Father’s Day is a celebration honoring fathers and celebrating fatherhood, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society.” Wait … so does that mean I’m getting credit for all the “Good” fathers out there? Now I feel worse!
So I continued this cycle of negative thought for a few weeks. Knowing the deadline for this article was coming up fast I just started writing. Just pouring this out as you read it.
And then on one visit with my babies while pondering what the hell I was doing as their dad and wondering if they know they can do better, my middle daughter came up to me.
She said, “Daddy, I really missed you this week. I miss you because I love you so much. And I want you to stay here and sleepover so we can wake up together and have breakfast together and then play and then watch movies …” I told her I loved her too and that one day I’ll have my own home where she will always be welcome to come by, sleepover and hang out with me (provided all her Homework and Chores were done). She looked at me. She hugged and kissed me while smiling and said, “DEAL” … and just like that she returned to playing.
And there it is. The point I completely missed while agonizing over this article. Children don’t care if you’re fun 100% of the time. They don’t care how much money you spend on them. They don’t even care if you can recite all the lyrics to Sponge Bob Square Pants. They just care that you’re there. They truly just accept you and love you unconditionally just as you do them. So this first Father’s Day as a Single Dad, I made a resolution.
This Father’s Day I resolve to Be There. Be Present. And be Me.
Single Dad, Married Dad, Desi Dad or Any Colour Dad … Promise yourself to do the same…phew. Looks like I was able to put something out there after all.
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