Dads come in all shapes and sizes, and I have yet to see a Father’s Day greeting that doesn’t say, ‘My Dad is the BEST!’ I have been a son, a father and now a grandfather. I asked my children what they thought Dads should do and here’s what they said; lead, counsel, nap with us, provide an example, make perfect pancakes (chocolate chip is the best), provide wisdom, kill spiders (I fail at this as I try to put spiders outside as opposed to KILLING), listen, and know how to fix things. Pretty good list for you soon-to-be fathers out there!
I have been blessed with many examples of fatherhood, starting with my own Dad. If you look in the dictionary for the word gentleman, you would find a picture of my Dad. Holding doors open for people, introducing people he was with, ladies first, and how he treated Mom. He knew how to behave and demanded it of us boys. My father-in-law is an example of a different kind. I vividly remember being on a Boy Scout event with my future father-in-law and brothers-in-law. They joked as they walked, gentle good natured ribbing, arms around each other, and it is still that way at age 93. I learned from fathers that were Scout Leaders, teachers, fathers of friends and some mothers of friends. That may sound a bit strange, but I had some friends whose father was absentee and Mom had to wear both hats.
If I had to give any advice to prospective fathers, it would include: Take time as they grow up very fast, listen, love them even when they screw up, fatherhood doesn’t end at 18 or graduation, and enjoy the ride, there is nothing like it in the world.