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Mom's Time Out

Unsung Hero

Abigail Shiyer

(June, 2010) I was at birthday party yesterday with about a dozen of the cutest little girls you will ever see. The birthday girl was turning 5 and she had such a wonderful time. There is so much preparation that goes into a child’s birthday party – from planning activities, sending out invitations, ordering supplies (we built bears), making the cake, decorating and on and on. The mother of the birthday girl is a mother to 5 children all under the age of 7! I was in awe of her. I have 2 kids at home and would be hard pressed to take on such a feat. But – she didn’t seem phased. She never missed a beat. Everyone had a great time.

While I stood in amazement of this "wonder-mom", I came to realize that there was an unsung hero in the back ground. He was taking pictures, applying band aids, clearing messy sticky plates off the table, bundling up wrapping paper and empty boxes and sticking it into a trash bag just as soon as it was ripped off of the presents, calming a fussy baby, directing people to the bathroom, wiping up spilled juice, and anything else that crept up – he was on it. The birthday girl called him "Daddy" and just about every 10 minutes like clockwork she would run to him and give him a hug or kiss and then run back to her guests.

I found myself thinking back to all of the things that my Dad did for his 5 children. He was always there always loving us – no matter what. As children, we would celebrate my Dad on Father’s Day – with a "Happy Fathers Day" and maybe a card… I really can’t remember, but now that I am older it means so much more to me. I have heard it said in the past that we never realize the love of our Moms and Dads until we become parents ourselves – and now I can attest to it – it is so true.

So it comes as no surprise that Fathers Day was first proposed by an adult woman in 1909 to honor her own father. He was a Civil War veteran who was widowed when his wife died during child birth with their sixth child. It wasn’t until 1966 that President Johnson declared the 3rd Sunday of June as Father’s Day.

Can you imagine? One person raising 6 children – I imagine he was stressed out? Or probably not – he probably went into survival mode. He had to put food on the table and care for 6 children. He had to lead by example. He had to be strong for his kids. He had to comfort the 5 that lost their mother and nurture and raise a new born baby. And that is just one Dad’s story. We hear stories all of time of single Moms who work and raise children and sacrifice in order to make a better life for their families. But, for every 4 single moms out there giving it their all for their kids – there is a single Dad doing the same thing.

Parenthood isn’t easy. Children change our lives and our priorities. And whether you are a Mom or a Dad, once you figure out how to adjust to these little dears that invade your lives you become a better person for it.

Father’s Day is June 20th this year – Celebrate your unsung hero and make him feel special. For all you Dads out there – including Grand-Dads, Step Dads, Married Dads, Single Dads, Dad-Figures, Daddys to be and Dads over seas - We Celebrate you.

"A man never stands as tall as when he kneels to help a child."
           - Knights of Pythagoras

Dads - whether you find yourself barbequing, eating breakfast in bed, going out for dinner, receiving a long distance phone call or opening a card or package from hundreds or thousands of miles away – know that you are honored and appreciated.

Have a Great Fathers Day!

Read other articles by Abigail Shiyer