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MAMA LIKES

Links for Father's Day
posted by Amy

I spent a small part of yesterday afternoon standing in line for a plate of barbequed chicken and potato salad while two sweaty, whiny, hungry kids hung onto me. I'd like to say that I did so with grace and good humor, but those of you who know me in real life already know that's SO not how it went.

No, instead I complained: about how hot it was, about how long the line was, about how much hotter and more irritable I felt when Henry and Josie insisted on TOUCHING me, and, of course, about how I was standing in line while Chip had yet another baseball scheduling-related meeting several feet away. In addition to being a little tired, here at the end of the months-long season, of how much time this baseball scheduling job has taken on Chip's part, it had been a long week--all three kids had had stomach flu, Chip had been in San Diego for work for four days, the end of the boys' school year had just happened--and I was feeling beyond burned out.

And then our sweaty, whiny group made it to the front of the line and Chip said, "Okay, so I'll do Josie's plate and you'll do Henry's?" and I nodded somewhat absently. Across from me, the two moms who were taking tickets looked at each other, and one said to the other, "Did you hear that? How he just assumed responsibility? That's the kind of guy we should have married."

Now, both these women happen to be the kind of mamas I revere. They manage to make balancing single motherhood and paid work look easy, plus they can do things I can't imagine myself accomplishing, like make potato salad for hundreds without breaking a sweat. So I smiled and moved on in line, thinking of my own mom at that same Little League field marveling at how many men, including Chip, were out on the field holding babies while they coached their older kids. Sure, I'm often surprised by other people's amazement that my kids' dad acts like, well, a PARENT. But I'm incredibly grateful that my kids have a dad like Chip, especially since in the past few years I've had to face up to some difficult truths concerning my own father.

So, in honor of Father's Day, here are some links that say what I wish I remembered to say each day to Chip. Catherine Newman writes a letter to her partner for Father's Day. Over at Mommybloggers, a Father's Day extravaganza is underway. Finally, a Washington Post article sums it all up: "thirty years ago, the dad who changed a diaper was seen as a fairly far-out character. Today, the dad who doesn't is seen as a dinosaur." Happy Father's Day, honey. You're SO not a dinosaur (although I know some kids who wouldn't mind having a dinosaur in the family...).