To Kel on Father’s Day (Version 4.0)

Kel Father's Day

Happy Father’s Day love.

Since the day we read that positive pregnancy test you’ve been a more committed, loving and dedicated father than I could have ever dreamed up on my own.

You “go there.” You get your hands dirty, you’re all in.  Which is just as it should be, but far too often not how it actually is.

Before Noelle arrived we went to Babies R Us to shop for a “daddy diaper bag” because you wanted to be the sort of Dad who is prepared and comfortable taking his ruffly pink baby girl out on his own

And when she arrived?  You were smitten, and it was gorgeous beyond belief.

I still remember being overwhelmed by breastfeeding and laying on the love seat miserable while you googled and educated yourself about proper let down and promptly gave the breast pump a tune up.

And then, far sooner than either of us had planned we had another one on the way, a boy. We laughed and cried about it and when my mom died at the tail end of that pregnancy we knew somehow that this little boy would help bring the joy back.

And he did.

I remember no softer season in our lives than the brand new Caedmon days, stuck inside during a week long ice storm, reading, snuggling and reveling in the bliss of being the four of us.

You’re the center of this family and when we all start to fly off the handle, you rein us back in.  You’re our warm, calm safe place, the steadfast glue to my creative and crazy.

I’ve been playing with this post all week, trying to figure out just exactly how to say “Happy Father’s Day” to the man with whom I’ve had two kids, three cross country moves, 7 desks and a thousand crazy ideas.

photo copy I figured it out last night when I walked out into the garage and saw you putting together your new grill in the dark.  You couldn’t get the lights working, fuse issues, so you were wearing Caedmon’s Car’s headlamp and singing along to Pandora as you carefully put together your new prize, bit by bit.

I couldn’t help but laugh and kiss you and make dirty, grill-related innuendos simply to make you smile.

I’m in love with you and this family we’ve been given.  I’m all joyful tears about the fact that you’re my partner for life.

You astound me. Wherever you find yourself, in the messy, broken, non-ideal stuff of daily life you survive and then you take it a step further… you make it better… you thrive.

And you bring others along with you.

So happy Father’s day to my love.

The guy who makes the best Gluten Free Chicken Parmesan.
The guy who’s been to the bike shop 3 times this week to get his daughter’s bike working. The master of the splash pad.
The maker of the popcorn
The assembler of new toys
The changer of batteries and diapers.
The reader of the directions
The fryer of the bacon
The pastor of our children’s hearts… and mine.
The always encourager
And the best man I know in real life.

The one I am daily flattered to be on the journey with.

Happy Father’s Day my love, my Kel. Now go grill the heck out of something… you’ve earned it.

  • Mark Allman

    Kel,
    A nice tribute. Obviously well deserved.

  • Natalie Trust

    Love this! What a beautiful, woven memory tribute to Kel and to your relationship and to fatherhood.