While walking through Hallmark, I was overwhelmed with the choices. There were twenty good cards for him, all saying how wonderful a man he is. It took me forever to pick out just the right card. I had to find one that expressed my gratitude and obviously something to make him laugh as well. Hallmark knocked it right out of the park. After choosing a card and picking an envelope to match, I had one additional card to buy. I started reading through cards, looking closely at labels that said “Dad”, “Grandpa”, “Uncle”, “Father”, “Husband”, “Step Father”, “Son”, “Father To Be” and many others, but what I was missing was one that said, “Adult Boyfriend Who Is A Phenomenal Father Who I am Not Married To And Do Not Share Any Children With”. There’s the label I needed.
I began to read through a plethora of generic cards that contained pictures of men wearing baseball hats, working on cars and drinking beer. Clearly this was not quite the expression of adoration that I was shooting for, but nonetheless these were my choices. It’s odd to me that in todays society we don’t have better labels as options. Is it unusual that I wanted to buy a card to acknowledge what a wonderful father he is even if his child does not belong to me?
While I begrudgingly picked a card that seemed almost completely impersonal and platonic, I began to accept that perhaps this is unusual. We don’t do a good enough job of acknowledging when people are doing great things unless it affects us personally. So to my “Adult Boyfriend Who Is A Phenomenal Father Who I am Not Married To And Do Not Share Any Children With” I want to make sure that you know that you are a great Dad. You have fostered a safe, loving, accepting, grace filled relationship with your son. You have allowed him to express himself, to try new things, and to become a man full of unlimited opportunity. You are a patriarch that has demonstrated the overwhelming need for grace and the power that God continues to provide in your life. You are gracefully embracing mentoring as the next phase of fatherhood.
I’m blessed with examples of extraordinary Fatherhood. Thank you to both my father and “Adult Boyfriend Who Is A Phenomenal Father Who I am Not Married To And Do Not Share Any Children With” for showing me what it could look like. Happy Father’s Day!