Mike is a great Dad. I always figured he would be, so this came as no surprise.
We’ll get back to that.
Every day, when I pick Ryan up from daycare, I get a 45-second daily recap. It goes a little something like this:
“Ryan had a good day. He only got fussy whenever he was hungry for a bottle. He ate all of his prepared food, but still doesn’t care about picking up and eating bread. His last diaper change was at 4:15. His last bottle was at 3:30, so he’ll be hungry soon. He had two naps today and one of them was an hour long – YAY! And we need you to bring in a new package of wipes.”
Ok, so it’s not the definition of “lively conversation.” But these people just took care of my kid (and 8 other kids) for 10 straight hours, so I appreciate the fact that they’re still able to form a coherent thought, let alone give me a full report on his day.
One day last week, I was picking Ryan up. I had received my “report” and was zipping up his diaper bag and getting ready to leave when the father of one of Ryan’s little girlfriends walked in. As he yanked his daughter out of her crib, I heard Kayla begin her report:
“She had a good day. Her last diaper change was at 4:45, her last bottle –“
And she was cut off.
“– These are details for my wife. See you later.”
I glanced over at him and started to laugh. Cuz I assumed he was kidding. Details for his wife… like she’s the only parent who cares when the baby girl last ate! Of course he cares about how many naps she took today. He’s her dad!
But in the second it took me to glance over, he was already halfway out the door. Kayla stared after him for a moment and then turned back to another baby who needed her care.
As I walked Ryan out, I told him how we were headed home to see Daddy. How Daddy would want to know that he’d had a good day. How I was sure Daddy would be excited to see him. (For his part, Ryan stared stoically ahead, searching for the car in the parking lot.)
I always knew Mike would be a great Dad. It’s no surprise that he is. But sometimes I forget that not all Dads are like him. That not all Dads are into making baby food, that not all Dads get their kids ready for “school” in the morning. That some Dads can’t devote one single, tiny, fleeting minute out of their day to focus on their baby.
My kid is pretty lucky.