This past week was the first time I’ve ever had a class with whom I can make Father’s Day cards. In the five years I’ve been teaching, there have been countless absentee dads–and ever year I’m reminded how lucky I am.
I mean, let’s be honest: it could have played out differently. My parents knew each a short three months before they eloped. I guess they knew they better say “I do” and stick it out. They were young. They were broke. And they started our family a year(ish) later. It shouldn’t have worked, but it did.
When I was three (so I am told), my Daddy gave me a nickname that I was always proud of. I must have been bossing someone around, because he called me a Little General. I’ve since learned to use my ways more subtlely, but occasionally the Little General in me resurfaces. Victor and I talked about who the boss was shortly after we started dating. He started quoting the bible, so I gave in. But recently, when I said, “Well, you’re the boss.” He said, “But I’m not the big boss, am I?” I even had an ex whose famous last lines (as our ship went down) were, “Jania, I don’t know why you ask me–we all know you are going to do what you want anyway. ”
A few weeks ago, I almost wrote a blog about how to succeed in a relationship. My key is to be like your Mama and date your Daddy. Then I realized that a lot of people might not understand that–but it’s true. And perhaps that’s the highest compliment that I can give my Daddy. Victor is strangely like him. (He even saves his coffee cup for repeat use–something I’ve fussed about for ten years or so…). He has worked hard his whole life for his family. He eats anything I fix–and even compliments the gross things. (Once I made garlic mashed potatoes–before they were popular. My whole family refused to eat them. Except Daddy.) Sometimes, all I think he is missing is an old bathrobe to hang around in the house.
Today I was thinking about how we used to always sneak down to Mama and Daddy’s room when we had nightmares. I was banned to the floor. Apparently I kick in my sleep. All I could think was, Well, at least I didn’t pee on your head…. My sister did that. Why wasn’t she banned to the floor?
I could let it bother me, except I know a secret. I know who Daddy’s favorite is. Feliz Dia de Los Padres, Papacito!