Love in Fatherhood- From the Mountains to the Sky!

dads love

I informed my dad that I am writing a series of posts on fatherhood. I asked him about all the emotions he had felt as a dad. He thought for a while and then replied, “Love.” Well, but that’s natural, all dads love their kids. So, he re-thought and came again, “I love my daughters than anyone can imagine, that is the only emotion that stands out from all the years of raising you both.”

There was a point here. Because love is spoken of too very often, because love is like a next-door neighbour, because everybody loves – it didn’t sound a valuable emotion to me at first. However, from a father’s thirty five years of memory, if that is the only thing that stands out, then it needs to be celebrated. Here’s a small celebration for a big phenomenon – Daddy Love!

little girl dancing on dad's feet
Source: Pinterest

I am not sure if I thought about that tender emotion of our dad towards us until I left home for college. While mom’s love was apparent through food and in other everyday occurrences, dad’s was just somewhere in the corner. I remember the first time I felt touched by my dad’s love, I suddenly felt guilty that I had overlooked it all the while. From walking long in the sun for my college admissions to making sure to have got all that was required for my new hostel life, my dad did everything possible for my first stay away from home. I can still recall that moment when my mom and dad stood at the door of my hostel room to leave. Apart from the feeling of home sickness, I felt a profound understanding of my dad’s love. My mom could cry while dad struggled heavy at his heart with difficulty. And it touched me! Ever since then, my bond with my dad had grown increasingly stronger. There was mom with us all along. But from the time I was on my own, dad’s love, concern and care was visible from behind the years of curtains.

Well, I was to write about fatherhood emotions but I have filled half the page with daughterhood emotions 🙂

dads love
Source: MamásLatinas

Experiencing father’s love as a daughter and watching your man experience love in fatherhood are two different things. I don’t remember my infant and toddler phases. So, I have no awareness of what my dad felt when we were kids. In fact I had always doubted if fathers can bond with children in their early years. When I was carrying my first child, I couldn’t figure out if the father carried some love in his heart for the baby. When he touched my belly and spoke nice words to the moving bundle inside, I doubted if all that nicety was genuine. When he held the baby for the first time confused of which finger of his holds which part of the baby, I wondered when he would begin to bond with the baby without apprehension. May be my motherly arrogance blinded the scenes then. However, four years past now, I understand a dad’s love much closer than how I did as a daughter. I have witnessed the mutual love they feel for each other – yes, the father and the son. And from my experience I would say, one emotion that men are most vulnerable to is the love that they experience through fatherhood. And most often such experiences happen in simple things.

Ask a dad who returns home after an exhaustive day of work and driving to see the baby squeal in excitement to see him. Ask a dad who quietly bears the pain when his little son is entertained by curling and pulling his dad’s hairs. Ask a dad whose face the baby recognizes for the first time to give a smile. Ask a dad whose hands his daughter refuses to part on the first day of the school. Ask a dad when the baby sleeps on his chest like a royal king. Ask a dad when his little one asks, “Do you want a bite from my chocolate?” Ask a dad who receives a paper of scribbling as the birthday present from his little one. Ask a dad who looks into the screen to see his baby the first time over a skype call. Ask a dad when he gets ready to office but his toddler son would not let him go.

They all will tell you that they simply felt that something which they don’t know how to explain. As a matter of fact, the essence of fatherhood lies in many such small things. Feeling loved by these tiny beings who were created from you is wholesome for they know nothing but love. The very feeling that they anticipate your presence when it is time for you to return from office can take you to mountains. And when you meet them back at the railway station after a month’s vacation can take you from the mountains to the skies!

This post is the third in The Secret Emotions of Fatherhood series I am attempting to write about. Please share those little moments of love with your fathers or as fathers with your little ones below. The intention of this series is to value, recollect and celebrate fatherhood. Please join in!

Other posts in the series:

Stay-at-Home-Dad – A father’s secret desire

The Fatherhood Guilt

Daddy Time – Exclusive!

The Career Confinement – The Untold Suffering of a Father

Silent Struggles – Do father too experience postpartum depression?

The Unexpected ‘Expecting’ – Is everything going to be alright?

Why are dads always secondary?

0 Replies to “Love in Fatherhood- From the Mountains to the Sky!”

  1. These posts fill me with a mix of joy and pain; joy because it shows the amount of love in the world. Pain because I was never lucky enough to understand or experience paternal grace. By the time we could spend an ample bit of time together as a family, the damage was already done and we all went our ways! Perhaps, that’s life’s message for me, to never ever end up like what my father turned into!

    Sorry to gloat about with self-pity on such a lovely post by you Nandhini, liking every single one of your posts and I hope to read more of your posts in this series. All the very best as always 🙂

    1. Since the time I read your comment, in the afternoon, I’ve been thinking how it would feel without one of the parents. And I understand the pain you are talking about. The void such experiences leave can only be re-filled by love that equals it. I hope and pray deeply for you to experience that one day soon when you shall hold your baby in your arms. Everything that you thought went missing in the past will run to you in that one single moment. And you will intuitively become that one dad which every child would dream of! Remember this line and come back here that one day to share the love and joy of fatherhood 🙂

      No gloating, definitely. I am glad you expressed your emotions here. All of us need it at some points in life, to speak what our hearts murmur from beneath. Much thanks for the reader in you. Keeps me writing!

    2. @Mahesh ji, we both are sailing in the same boat. I too had a bitter childhood experience of my mother and I being separated from my father, at a young age during my 6th standard due to bitter conflicts. So I never had the comforting pat on the shoulder by a dad during crucial stages of my life.

      Even though my mother more than tried to compensate, I think a mother can never substitute for being a father and vice versa.

      But that experience has probably turned me into someone who I am today. And I definitely do not wish my child to face the same things that I went through, so I go to any extent possible to avoid/solve conflicts within the family. I also wrote a quote in this regard “Things you’ve missed in life go a long way in defining you.”

      Glad you have written about it here, even I haven’t expressed this anywhere (except probably my very close friends) except here.

      1. Take care Raja Raman sir, I am sure you are an exemplary dad and will make all the dreams of your family come true.

  2. Very good post as usual, Nandhini. You have come up with several points which describe the fatherly love. I would also like to point out a few things that I do, I dunno whether it can be called care, love, affection. I believe in preparing my son mentally before any major challenge he faces. For eg. going to a playschool, going to a school, going to a new place, going to a doctor’s place, how to handle in case of a failure in sports/games, etc..

    I would like to quote this incident that happened recently. Me, my wife and my son went together to a birthday party of my son’s friend’s brother. As there were few kids around, they conducted some games, one of which was a musical chair.

    My son played a couple of rounds, after that he got eliminated and came out of the game. There was another girl who went till the final round and then lost just before the final round. And she cried like crazy, because she lost. That girl was my son’s classmate.

    He immediately went near her and said “Azhatha. Parava illa. Game than. Next game la paathukalaam. Sportive a eduthukanum.”

    At that point, me and my wife looked at each other, smiled and felt so proud to have taught something that will be really useful his entire life.

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