With Father’s Day fast approaching, I reached out to my two favourite Daddy Bloggers – Emanuel and Darren from Two Dads and a KiD to get their take on their journey through fatherhood. These are two of the nicest, most genuine people I know, and they take such pride in being the best fathers they can be for their son – just as a father should.
Becoming a dad
From as young as 16 years I, dadE (Emanuel) knew I wanted to be a dad one day. I recall sharing this desire with my mother. She was taken aback at first. Not because I was so sure I wanted to be a father one day but because I said I was going to be a dad and there was going to be no wife. Now, this conversation took place way before surrogacy was the norm and adoption was so freely discussed in the open. Damn, that makes me sound old, but then again age is relative so they say. So, my mother’s reaction was understandable.
Fast forward a decade…or two. I had just turned 40, why do so many people make drastic decisions at this age?! Anyway, hubby, then my life partner, and I had been already living together for over a decade or so. I informed him, yes, I didn’t ask because that’s how sure I knew I was going to embark into fatherhood, that I wanted a child and was going to research my options. Fortunately, he displayed mild interest in becoming a dad with me which was enough to get me started. Understand, that at this stage there was no excitement from him at all, and I suspected he was just going with the flow to shut me up!
There are no kids on his side of the family. No nephews, or nieces. Our son broke the mold!
The rest as they say is history. We’ve been proud dads to an amazing pre-schooler for just under 6 years now and we’ve loved every.single.second! We survived the initial waking up every few hours to feed, sleep training, the teething phase, vaccination drama, circumcision, dropping of his testicles, potty training, bed wetting, first day of playschool tears and hysteria at 18 months and the loss of his first two milk teeth. All the milestones one gets to experience as a new parent, we’ve been fortunate to have enjoyed with our son.
Darren and I have embraced fatherhood with every inch of our being. I guess because we’re only ever really going to be parents to our son, the first and only child syndrome remains. We faff over him, and spoil him, we worry about the small things that parents with a second child no longer do. Neither one of us is the “mom” or fulfilling that role. We’re our son’s dads. It’s that simple. We tend to him as the need arises. Neither one of us is above doing what is required. We both changed the nappies. We both tend to our son when he is ill. We both make sure he is fed. We both play soccer with him. We both go play with his toy cars, have sword fights, roll around with him play boxing or encouraging him to overcome his fears.
Isn’t it all just being the best parent you can be to your child or children after all? We are definitely not the kind of father’s our dads were and it makes us both happy to be so involved in our son’s life.
Things can get awkward…
Mother’s Day used to be awkward. Awkward because one of us would be the only male amongst all the mothers. Alas, we learnt that it is what it is or was rather. Since changing schools, the new school recognises that the traditional family structure has evolved. There are households today run by one parent or by an aunt or uncle or even a grandparent. They make both Father’s Day and Mother’s Day, a day where the kids get to entertain someone they love from home. I think it’s both novel and progressive of the school.
It can be awkward when our son’s classmates insist on asking “How can you be his dad, you are peach”. I, (dadD aka Darren) get this question way too often. I’ve learnt not to take it too personally or seriously. I need our son to feel confident about the fact that he has two dads and can deal with it on his own when we’re not around. Thankfully, he is. It’s a cruel world out there and he needs to hold his own.
The most challenging question from our son, for me, was having to face the question “Where’s my Mom?”. It was bound to happen at some point, and it did. Way sooner than either one of us anticipated. As we decided right from the start that we would never lie to our son, or at least give an age appropriate response, we have answered all his mom questions as honestly as we can. We only know so much, that is what we are privy to as shared by the adoption agency. Ours is a closed adoption.
What being a Dad means to us
DadE – Being a dad to our son J is everything, and more I ever thought it would be. He teaches me daily. The most important lesson I’ve learnt has been the art of unconditional love, and that in time all will fall into place – stop sweating the small stuff.
DadD – Giving of myself unselfishly to another being that I have no obligation to whatsoever, but trusting the direction my heart pushes me into when I look into his eyes and see his vulnerability. His total reliance on us for his comfort, support and safety and the absolute unconditional love when he holds me tight and says he loves me.
Thanks for choosing us, son.
If you’re not already following the fabulous father duo and their adventures on parenting their son J, find them here: