Dear Good Men,
In this season of Father’s Day and the flurry of ads selling the latest grilling gadgets and high tech tools targeted for you, I thought we should talk about the tools that you actually need. The tools that make a good man. If you aren’t already carrying them in your arsenal, now is the time to stock up because not one of these can be bought at a store.
- Love. Stop rolling your eyes. If this was already abundant, I wouldn’t have listed it first. I think that this is where too many men fall short. If you love someone, you really should tell them. Do you think that they already know it? They still need to hear it. You need to be able to look at her and tell her why you do. You need to kiss her like she is your salvation. Yes, still. You need to hold her hand and not want to let go. If she is your person, you should do everything in your power to keep her. If you stopped kissing her and holding her hand and calling her beautiful, you need to think about why that is. And you need to bring it back if it is a love that you want to keep. It is as simple and as complicated as that. It all starts and ends here.
- Listen. She wants to be heard but are you really listening? I hear from women constantly about how they don’t feel listened to in their marriages. They shut down. They become numb. Put your phone down. Look at her. Men often think that women are such complicated creatures but the truth is there are three keys to keeping a woman happy: attention, affection and appreciation. They are free, powerful and all have the potential to make her feel wanted which will make her want you all the more. It is a full circle, my friends.
- Longevity. Relationships are roller coasters. There are moments that are too slow, too fast, too high, too low, filled with twists and sharp turns. There tends to be a bit of a blend of good and bad screaming and sometimes wondering what the hell just happened and how did you get roped into this thing in the first place. But the key is staying on the ride. Buckle up and close your eyes if you have to. But just stay on. This is true of romantic love, and it is absolutely true of a father’s love.
So to you good men that are also fathers, keep showing up. Know that being a dad isn’t a ride that you can get on and off when it is convenient for you. You should want and have a need to be on it for the long haul — even when it is less fun, even when it is the most challenging, that is when you are needed the most.
There is much to be learned in your presence and perhaps more in your absence. The absence speaks volumes. You can’t be surprised if you stop being invited on the ride if the people you love have learned to navigate it without you.
To all the good men out there, please keep walking the good path. You are seen. To all the men who veer off the path, it is never too late to get back on it. No cape is required. And you, of course, don’t have to take advice from me, I am no expert and probably one of the last people that should be qualified to give anyone life or relationship tips. But I love deeply and I watch the world with wide open eyes. And I was married to a really good man. And he is still there, and he is a really good father, and he still makes us laugh, and he still picks up the check. I will never stop seeing his light. He will never stop showing up. And even though it may be less of a norm, we choose to walk in grace, together and apart. I am eternally grateful for this good man and for the life lessons he has taught me.
Happy Father’s Day to him and to all the superheroes among us.
Here’s to the good men, may we see them, may we thank them, may we raise them.
To read more blogs by Katie Moore click here.
Katie Yackley Moore is a freelance writer, yoga instructor and a momma of four navigating life and a separation and finding herself in the process. She adores coffee shops, laughing until it hurts and impromptu dance parties. Her work has appeared on Scary Mommy, Mamalode and HuffPost Parents. She has published a journal entitled “Dream a Bigger Dream” and the children’s books “You Are a Warrior” and “We are Family” and just finished her first novel. Catch up with her between tea breaks at The Naked Momma and on Facebook.