I am by your side on the passenger seat. You are at the wheel, a picture of concentration. Your eyes scan the road, the rearview and the mirror that reflects our children. I notice a smile cross your face involuntarily as you watch Ammu fiddle with something on her side. That smile that is at odds with the tone you use to tell her to keep her seat belt on. I play with my phone as I upload a picture wishing you for Father’s day. The status update plays in my head in a million different ways.
How does one capture all of those things that make you an awesome dad in a few pithy lines? So, I settle for something simple and press post. I lean back and look back on your journey to fatherhood. Reluctant is the word that comes to mind. You have never been the kind of man who dreamt of children. At best, it was a passing thought if some one suggested perhaps you might make a fine dad. So, when it came to dreaming about parenthood, I dreamt enough for the two of us. Even as I dragged you along the long, arduous road, you grumbled and kept up but never let go of my hand. The day you met Ammu and Pattu a dad was born. A father who threw himself headfirst into the new role.
Someday when our children look back on their childhood, I hope this is what they will remember. A father who was hands on. A father who bared his heart and soul to them. A father who did not hold back on love or tears. A father who thought the world of his girls. A father who taught them to value themselves. A father who taught them that respect is a two-way street. A father who always had their back. A father who set them free.
A father worth emulating.
Happy Father’s Day Saathi!