No Experience Necessary – Farm and Dairy

My husband had been a father for exactly one month on his first Father’s Day. What he lacked in experience he made up for enthusiastically.

We were both completely in love with our newborn – and completely appalled that they let us take him home with no questions asked or adult supervision. Yes, we were adults. We just thought there should be more mature adults ready to step in and save him from our inexperience.

Shouldn’t there have been some sort of test?

We hire

If there was an ad hiring a “dad”, I imagine it would read:

Wanted person, strong, capable, able to play on horseback after a long day at work, watch a child do the same “trick” a few thousand times in quick succession, explain why the sky is blue, why ladybugs aren’t called “gentleman” Bugs.”

Must be able to take on the burden of explaining why he can’t bring a dead animal back to life in the face of a child’s insistence that “daddy can fix anything”.

Must be able to work long hours, multiple jobs if necessary, while considering coaching youth sports, fixing car brakes or working late nights to ensure all the needs of the family are satisfied. The ability to do all of these things simultaneously is preferred.

The schedule includes days, nights, weekends, holidays and all days that end in “y”. There is no free time, paid or otherwise. Speaking of salary, most of it will go towards meeting the needs of the children, so don’t get too attached. Ditto the use of your car, spotless lawn and for some reason, your socks. Must be both understanding, but able to be disciplinary if necessary – and even if what your child did wrong is actually hilarious.

The ideal candidate will possess the following qualities:

• Reliability. Being there through thick and thin is key.

• Value their co-parent.

• Accept that his children are not exactly like him and may make different choices.

• An understanding that he should be able to diagnose car problems including “strange lights and noises” over the phone if necessary. A strong ability to repair almost anything is a plus.

Key performance indicators will include:

• Ability to assemble toys after midnight on Christmas Eve armed with nothing more than an Allen wrench and sheer determination.

• The ability to coach and watch your children participate in extracurricular activities without acting like Olympic greatness and the fate of the free world depends on the balance of a game of tee-ball.

• And, finally, the ability to do his job so well that he will work, God willing, until he retires.

Pass the torch

Mr. Wonderful has been a “dream dad” for his entire quarter-century of parenthood. He’s certainly older and wiser than he was on that first Father’s Day. More importantly, I think it’s still great fun.

Just a few weeks ago, he gave a speech at GirlWonder’s wedding that summed it up so well:

“My little girl has grown well and it’s very hard to believe. Last week you were 8 years old and you knocked me down and you laughed out loud when you did it. A month ago, you were 18 months old and we were playing Pajama Sam on the computer and trying to follow the clues. Somewhere in the middle we tried to open a coconut on the counter when mom was away for the evening and broke the counter – not the coconut – but of course you remember.

Now you are an adult and in the big world. When you started college, I felt like a nervous wreck. You were walking around the “big city” campus. Then suddenly you were dating, and I was even more nervous about who you might meet.

Then the pandemic arrived. The only good thing that came out of the pandemic was that all the bars and clubs closed. But the gymnasium was open and a determined young man was not going to give up. In the blink of an eye, I’m writing a speech that I’m supposed to deliver to you. Which, by the way, I would never do. We’ll bring your husband home and we’ll keep you both.

Isn’t that just the sweetest thing you’ve ever heard? When I tell you there wasn’t a dry eye in the room, it’s true.

Finally, he summed up his speech with a conclusion that is, quite possibly, the most “experienced dad” thing ever said. He turned to his new husband and said, “Welcome to the family. Now that you’ve signed those papers and promised to love, honor, cherish and care for her, I just want you to know that… she’s definitely going to need some new tires on her. car before winter.


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