You were expecting her or not, yet still, she is here.
She is fragile, you thought. Almost watery, you laughed. The thought of her slipping out of your arms appeared like a nightmare to you. The thought of you dropping her or mishandling her while she lay in your arms seemed like an impossibility, as you wouldn't tolerate or entertain the thought. Sorry if I sound like a storyteller but she is here. How did you prepare for her arrival? Over several nights of beer with your friends, or over several years, months or days planning and saving for her future. Did you spend sleepless nights praying and thinking of how to be the best father you can be? Did you wonder how you would ward off the vultures that circle her when she hit puberty?
“Relax”. You calm yourself.
You were excited about her birth but were your intentions only to plan her naming ceremony, also known to you as completely handing her over to her mother ceremony, and walk away? Were these the same delicate arms that swore to hold and protect her from falling? We all don't remember her pleading to be born, yet still, she is here. She is a blessing, our blessing, our responsibility. Should I assume you were not ready to have her, or the position as a father is just a title with no meaning, no value, no prestige and no responsibilities? Or the idea of being her father is too scary that you chose to downplay the role?
If being a father is no big deal but just a title to bear and receive praises for, then tell me;
- Would you have the patience to tell her how your day went, even though all she will do is to stare or get distracted from listening to you a number of times?
- Would you try to make sense out her babbles as she tries to make a conversation with you?
- Would you argue with her mother on whose name she would mention first, and be surprised that her first words weren't any of you?
- Would you pamper her and buy her all the sweets she wants at the dismay of her mother?
- Would you hold her hand to write till she can write on her own, hold her to she walks, till she can walk alone, teach her how to dress, till you are proud of how she presents herself to the world?
- Would you teach her how to keep herself neat and hygienic as well as her environment?
- Would you ask her what she wants to be when she grows up and invest heavily in helping her become that, or you would leave her at the mercy of society to dictate what she would be?
- Would you accompany her to and from school till the day she tells you that you are embarrassing her by doing so?
- Would you ask her how her day went and if she brought home any homework?
- Would you call your friends or her teachers when she cries out she doesn't understand her homework, and you are also in no position to help?
- Would you attend and cheer her on in all her graduation ceremonies?
- Would you interrogate every male friend she brings home? Accompany her to events because you think she is too young to go out unaccompanied?
- Would you listen to her when she speaks and she doesn't?
- Would you try to know her friends as well, just to know the kind of friends she has?
- Would you teach her how to save when she is young, how to earn money by working for you or someone else until she makes her own money by working for herself and serving her community?
- Would you teach her how to invest by scaring her with a pension?
- Would you call her when she is independent and hardly has time to call you?
- Would you open your arms to her in old age as she approaches you, all grown up, after months of not seeing her?
- Would you be proud of what she becomes, of her contribution to society and how fulfilling she has made your life?
Your gaze moves from her face to the little girl in her arms, she races to you as you stare in fear of her knocking you down. You stand your ground. The sound of her calling you grandpa sounds funny but you reserve your comments.
What kind of father would you be? Share your point of view in the comment section below.
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