My Name Is Dad

Since when is it appropriate to wake a sleeping person by poking them in the eye? Or how can a civilized human being think that it’s ok to cannon ball off of a couch into someone’s stomach? Seriously, is it really more comfortable to read a book sitting on my head?

cheerios_howtodadThat’s a pretty good description of 90% of my conversations with my son Gabriel. He’s two and a half, and it seems that someone told him that dad’s role is essentially an interactive jungle gym. My son sees our relationship as a perpetual wrestling match, and let me tell you, it’s awesome!

I had a feeling that getting married would lead me to fatherhood but I had no idea what that would really mean. In fact I don’t think you can know what fatherhood is all about until you’re there, and yet I was blown away by this new Cheerios commercial, chronicling the joys of fatherhood. I now have two children, Gabriel and our eight month old daughter Cecilia, and in my experience here are a few things I’ve come to know and love about fatherhood.

1.You’re ridiculously in charge. I originally saw this phrase is a book about leadership in the workforce, but it’s so much truer in the home. Moms and dads, we run the show, and we should. In fact, research shows that the health and happiness of a child largely depends on the role of the dad. I’m not saying that being a dad is just about power, but it is an incredible gift and responsibility to be put in charge of two unique and unrepeatable human beings, guiding them, instructing them, and hopefully launching them someday into the world. We get to lead in a way more significant than any CEO or president, and that is an awesome thing!

2.You’re ridiculously loved. It melts my heart to see how excited my kids get when I get home. They run and crawl to me as quickly as they can as soon as I enter the house. Sure, most of the time they’re coming to tackle or bite me, but it’s still a pretty amazing feeling. Being a dad means being someone’s hero, it means being looked up to and treasured, just for who you are.

3.You’re ridiculously responsible. My favorite part about the new Cheerios commercial is that it showed a competent father and not the dummies we see in many shows and commercials. Being a dad means you’re nurturing a new human life in their most vulnerable stages. You have to keep them alive, and that’s more work than a person might originally think. But you also have to form them, treat their wounds, strengthen their character, and teach them to be the man or woman they’re meant to be. I can’t think of a greater responsibility in the world.

I love fatherhood, it’s one of the greatest adventures any man can go on. I think the commercial says it best when the father says, “My name is dad, and I’m proud of it. And all dads should be.”

If you’re a Dad, what do you most love about it? What are you proudest of?

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  • I’m not a Dad but I made my husband one!

    You, and the Dad in the commercial, nailed it.

    Being a father is an awesome joy, thrill, adventure, and incredibly important responsibility; not one to loathe but one to embrace and be fulfilled by.

    I’m very proud of my kids’ Dad! He loved, honored, and embraced his role as their father and his kids are great people because he did.

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