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Hey Mr. AP,
Did you know that this will be our 5th Father's Day celebrating you as No. 1 Dad? A whole 5 years have gone by since you first earned the much-deserved and sought-after title of "Daddy," and while you may think that as these years add up they're just that and nothing more, each of those years has become monumental in its own way.
From surviving the first year of fatherhood to patting ourselves on the back for a job well done all the while thinking to ourselves, "well, we didn't traumatize the first one too badly, let's have another!" to learning, albeit a trial by fire, how to keep three kids under the age of four alive, each of the past 5 years of watching you father our three boys has been nothing short of exhausting incredible.
Right from the very beginning you never once questioned our ability to be parents, not even from the very first set of positive pink lines we saw in 2009, all the way to the major freak outs that I had the minute I was being wheeled into the OR to have our third baby. I don't say nearly as often as I should but I am profoundly happy to be on this adventure with you.
I want you to know that I see you. I see you in those moments when you're bathing our boys and you think I'm hurriedly putting laundry away when I'm really lingering right outside the bathroom door listening to you make up silly bath time songs, giving a different voice and life to each of the boys' favorite toys, making them laugh so hysterically that it's almost difficult for me not to laugh along with them.
I want you to know that you're doing so much better than you think. In those moments when we're both sitting on the edges of different beds in the dark, rubbing backs and sleepy heads, saying prayers, you often still wearing your suit pants and button down from a long day's work. Perhaps even after fixing both yours and my dinner because for whatever reason that day, dinner for the both of us didn't cross my radar. Maybe you even audibly sighed a little when our oldest asked you for just one more story. But you read it, despite how tired you may have felt because you're selfless and kind of amazing like that.
I worry much less about our boys' futures with you as their father, as you instill both tenderness and a necessary strength in them. Your patience always manages to sweep in at the very minute I feel as if I'm about to break and it's as if we constantly parent that way- one swooping in just as the other needs them most.
I'm grateful, too, for the ways in which you challenge my mothering. Questioning me on occasion, forcing me to think outside of my instinctual motherly box. We were brought up in such different ways that some days I wonder how we ever got together but you know what they say, "opposites attract" and while I may not always say "thank you" deep down, you only makes me a better version of myself for our family.
I want you to know that the big things you do for our family, as well as the little things never go unnoticed. I know there are days when you'd much rather stay home with our boys but instead press on, putting in long hours at the office so that I can have the luxury and the privilege of staying home with them, so that I get to be the one to take them fun places and introduce them to new and exciting things, of places and adventures that you only get to hear about secondhand.
I love how much they love to tell you about their days, every day. The excitement in their voices, their eyes wide with emotion and not once do you shush them, make them wait or belittle their experiences. I promise you are a part of each and every one of their favorite memories, too.
You transitioned seamlessly into this role of father, often times I think to myself much more seamlessly than my own rocky, questionable transition into motherhood. Or maybe you're just really good at pretending like you have it all together all of the time and if that's the case, I'm an able and ready student. Teach me your ways!
Regardless, I want you to know that I see you. I see you every day working diligently to be the world's best father to our boys, asking very little in return. You are more than good enough and some days I truly wonder how we got so lucky to have you in our lives. I know what a difference it can make in just a single day to hear, "you know what? you're doing a great job," and so I need you to know, to hear, that you're doing a GREAT JOB. Greater than great, really, and I promise to tell you more often and not just in a letter. I love you.
Happy Father's Day to the best!
Love you more than S'mores,
Ashley Paige, Carter, Maclane & Collins
Who are you celebrating this Father's Day? Whether it's your Dad, your husband or another very important father figure in your life, it’s so easy to tell them that they're #DoinGood too. You can share this video with them and follow along at #DoinGood to see other tales of positive parenting.