Tonight, as part of their bedtime story, I decided to tell the boys about my father and how he had gone off to check if the grass was indeed greener on the other side when I was only two years old. Mikhail, my five-year old asked “Did he teach you to ride a bike?” I replied no. “Did he show you how to read?” No again. “Did he read you stories at bedtime?” “Did he wipe your bum?” I finally told him he was not around to do any of these things because he was not a good Daddy. So in essence, I never really had a Daddy.
At the end of my story, Kenyan was looking at me with sadness in his eyes. He reached out, grabbed my hand and said, “Daddy, how about you pretend you are little boy and I’ll pretend I am your Daddy.” “Why Kenyan?” I asked, even though I knew what he was getting at. “Because you never had a Daddy so I want to pretend I am your Daddy so you can have a Daddy.” That was a hugging moment if ever there was one and I wasn’t about to let it go to waste. I hugged him. As if he couldn’t be any sweeter, he kissed me and said, “You are the best Daddy ever!” If I were the crying type I would have shed a tear but I am not so I settled with smiling stupidly while inside my heart melted with this innocent outpouring of love.
Not to be outdone, Mikhail who was lying in the upper bunk, came down, hugged me and echoed his brother’s sentiments. He also brought me one of his story books and pretended to teach me how to read.
This moment would forever be etched in my memory to be retrieved when Daddy is having a rough day or when I need to be reminded of how sweet these little rug rats could be.