Military dads – men who have this parenting thing handled. No matter what. Even at zero dark thirty.
Let’s celebrate some of the many ways that these guys rock at parenting.
1. Most Realistic GI Joe Gear
When you can bust out Daddy’s cammo face paint, strap on a real helmet or slip into authentic aviators, you pretty much have Halloween in the bag. Or just a casual neighborhood game of tactical tag.
Having a father in the military means that you get to see his gear up-close and personal. And you also get to “borrow” it from time to time.
2. Father-Daughter Moments
If you think that man looks good in a dress uniform, add a sweet little girl who looks just like him to the picture.
Many bases, units or organizations sponsor Father-Daughter dances throughout the year. This is precious time spent together for fathers and daughters who are often separated by lengthy trainings and deployments.
3. Bring Your Parent to School Day
Sure, the other parents are sharing how they can fix cars or treat medical conditions.
A military dad?
He can FAST rope from a hovering helicopter into unknown territory in the dead of night.
When a military dad shows up in school to talk about his job, it is inspiring and a little intimidating. After all, his career has sent him all over the world. He has been to places many of us have only read about and he has the challenge coins, awards and pictures to prove it.
4. Scout Badges
When your father knows how to camp out for weeks on end, tie knots like nobody’s business and is generally well versed in field medicine, many of the badges in Boy and Girl Scouts become so much easier.
With years of tactical gear and training under his belt, he has the knowledge to share with you. Troop or pack mates will also benefit when dear old dad shows up to explain things like: making freeze-dried food edible; the importance of hot sauce; proper backpack packing; and leave no trace tactics.
5. Making the Most of Each Moment
The internet was recently broken by Staff Sgt. John York, USMC, and his 3-year-old son Bryson. To help his little boy deal with an upcoming deployment, this stellar dad celebrated all the holidays that he would miss with this son before he left.
Military dads know how to make the most of each moment, no matter when or how long that moment lasts. Whether they are holiday-loading before a deployment or just hanging out at home, military dads cuddle harder and play longer.
Let’s not leave out the rest of the dads who man up in military families – dads on the home front.
6. Master of the House
When mom is away, this dad is in charge. He can cook breakfast, organize a PTA meeting, schedule soccer carpools and survive bath time. Solo.
He guides his children through tough situations, like deployments, as a minority in the military spouse community. And he does it with grace, class and style.
7. Welcome Home Crafts
For a military homecoming, dad has got it handled. He not only purchased the supplies from the craft store, but he also searched Pinterest for the best homecoming sign ideas. His perfectly executed plan is guaranteed to build lasting memories for his kids and show his spouse how much he cares.
8. Lots of Dad Time
Not many kids can boast that they get to spend months on end with just their dad. But military kids can! These are formative years and time spent that can influence future decisions and beliefs.
Plus, dad gets to see a lot of things that are stereotypical “mom” territory: ballet practice, parent-teacher conferences, field trips, class snacks and sleepovers.
9. Cooking with Dad
Yes, this definitely happens in all sorts of families, but male military spouses are often in charge of the kitchen. This can lead to fun experiments that only dads would think of: macaroni and cheese and pizza rolls; hot dogs with jelly; and pasta with whatever is left in the fridge.
10. Rocking Solo Parenting
Female military spouses and moms get a lot of attention. These ladies hold it down at home while their partner is off protecting and defending.
Let’s not forget about the amazing male military spouses and dads who do the exact same thing.
These superstar fathers are finding resources to make separations easier, to figure out semi-solo parenting and to navigate military life. They become both mom and dad in a world where often “mom” is the default expected solver of all child-related problems.
So, here’s to you military dads of all sorts. You absolutely rock!