This was a post I wrote (modified slightly) for DadStreet back when I first started blogging but I thought it’d be appropriate to bring it back up. Day in and day out I hear about “Guys” and “Men” and unless I’m on Twitter or in select groups I’m talking to more dudes interested in sports, beer, and that “hot babe” walking by than they are their own kids. At least it’s obvious when it comes to sharing stories and conversation as the kiddies just don’t come up.
I think as a guy you’re often faced with the question of, “What’s a man?” I mean, you’re forced to question your manhood any time you give another guy a hug (even you’re own dad!), get noticed checking out a pair of shoes at the mall, or God Forbid wear anything remotely pink or purple.
I was thinking about it tonight as I was walking to my shed. Yeah, that’s right, I said, shed…You know the manly shed with tools, equipment, and just manly stuff!?? Well, it ocurred to me that I’m not so concerned with what a “Real” Man is, as I have no need for that any longer. Why? Well, I’m married with two babies.
So what are you concerned about? You might ask…
Well, about being a “Real” Husband and a “Real” Dad! So, where was I? Oh right, walking to the manly shed…So I thought…I’m much more concerned with what it means to be a Daddy (Maybe I should say “Dad” cause it’s more manly, j/k). So here I go…
What it means to be a “Real Dad”:
Wearing the burp cloth proudly hanging out of your back pocket prepared to clean up the next barf.
Having quick access to soap and water when you need to clean off the pacifier.
Changing diapers…and LIKING IT!
Putting your daughter’s hair in some sort of reasonably appropriate style even if you FAIL miserably.
Rubbing Butt Paste all over your children’s butt and genitals when a rash breaks out.
Making sure your Daddy Diaper Bag is packed and ready to go in the event Mom isn’t going with you.
Having dinner ready for your family so your wife can relax knowing she could be up breastfeeding the little one @ 2am!
Using Paid Family Leave from work (when available) to actually spend time with your children.
Giving up on the idea of watching that one big TV event (Tivo it!) so your daughter who’s screaming to watch Dora can.
Kissing your children every second humanly possible.
Telling your children you love them so much you sound like a broken record.
Helping them understand “why” you’re asking them to do something as important as “what” you’re asking of them.
Feeling proud knowing you’re the only dad in <insert child activity class here> a room full of other children and their mom’s.
Going to as many Dr. appointments as possible.
Reading about parenting (ie; blogs, magazines, books, etc.).
This is not an exhaustive list by any means. Please also keep in mind my children are just barely 3 years old and 18 months old, respectively. So of course this would be a bit different if your children are much older.
The point is this gentlemen…if you can relate to most of these items above and you actually give a crap about the fact that you have the most amazing gift and job in the world you might be a “Real Dad”.
What are some of the things you think make a “Real Dad”?