Joy in the Moment
The sound of other kids playing in the room seemed distant, as I attentively watched the beaming 3-year-old twin finding joy in the moment. A few minutes before, I had suggested to him that he could wear the colorful, dinosaur-print underwear, if he would like, but the little guy shook his head stating firmly, “No, I like these.” Holding his hands on his hips, he paraded around in his brand-new white underwear announcing proudly, “My daddy bought this for me.” <>Let me tell you, helping potty train twin boys is not an easy task. This is not my first set of twins either, but actually my third that I have taken care of in my home over the past 17 years. I have loved being a part of children’s lives and seeing firsthand their unique personalities blossom as they grow into successful young people. And unexpectedly along the way, I’ve learned a lot about myself too. For me, it has been healing to finally be able to put into words what I needed from those who were supposed to be my parents.
You know, it’s almost embarrassing to say that technically I’ve had four fathers, but I can only ever remember throughout my life a couple of gifts that were given to me by any father figure. My biological father was never a part of my life and the courts have tried to convince me that the man’s name listed on my original birth certificate (my birth’s mother’s husband at the time of my conception) was legally another absent father. And there was my first adoptive father-an alcoholic and then my stepdad that my adoptive mother married after her divorce. Life should never be this complicated and confusing for any person, much less a little girl. I can’t say that I truly had even one father step up to the plate and steadfastly call me his very own with his unconditional love.
I missed out on experiencing that joy in the moment. To all fathers, regardless if your daughters or sons are small or all grown up, I hope that my story will in some way touch your hearts. It’s never too late to share with your child a small, significant gift just from you that they can treasure always out of your genuine love for them. Truly, I believe it is a big thing when it comes from their daddy, like my precious little friend parading around proudly in his brand-new white underwear.