My identity? Ha! Well, this is it right here. Fatherhood.
This is my blessing. My responsibility.
This is my family, my blood, my lineage.
My absolute truth.
I am a Dad, a husband, and yes, a man. Skin and bones a man.
This crew right here means beyond the world to me. I stand for them. I stand with them. But most importantly, I stand in solidarity with my wife who labored these three children in the most beautiful dance. Through each miraculous and whirlwind of a day, we stood together – arms on my shoulders swaying side to side as we waited to welcome new life into the world. Three vaginal and natural births, each one as different as the children they’ve become. Our first came into the world like a bright light, perfect for her name, Lucia Dae. Everything unknown and new and yet here we were – now mother and father. We barely made it to the hospital with Sonny, abandoning the van that barely made it to the hospital thanks to a flat tire – ready to welcome my son. Our third, Sierra, came swiftly and smoothly with my wife standing and with the encouragement of an angel nurse, who gave birth to her own five babies at home. I’ll never forget grasping Sierra’s head in the palm of my hand when she was just starting to make her arrival, my wife eventually scooping her up and rotating onto the bed for skin-to-skin. It was a cosmic, true out-of-this-world experience. We still keep in touch with the nurse we had that day. It was the last shift of her career and one that she says she’ll never forget.
I have so much pride in my wife for all she has done to give birth. Because what she has done, carrying each child, laboring, and delivering – this is what has made me a father. It’s made me a better man. Isn’t it amazing that it’s “she” that has made me “me”? A man. A father.
That’s what Father’s Day means to me. The second I feel like kicking back after all we’ve been through or tuning out with a few beers after a long day, I am reminded by HER – what she has been through physically and mentally to bring three souls into this world.
Have I called my dad yet? Maybe I should call my mom too? Because dang they already went through all this shit.