Sunday is Father’s Day! Yah! Another excuse for me to throw money away this weekend? Like hell! Why should I buy my husband something for Father’s Day? No, no. I’m not bitter about not getting anything for Mother’s Day. In fact, my own mother brought me a tee shirt. I wanted to write on it, “I gave birth and all I got was this lousy tee shirt”.
Father’s Day, as far as I’m concerned, should be abolished. It’s bogus. As you know, I’m not a fan of Mother’s Day either, but Father’s Day is even more of a farce as far as I’m concerned. First of all…shouldn’t we be thanking our fathers (and mothers) every day? Why do we have to put aside a day to spend unnecessary money and battle with other people for tables at restaurants or the last three cards in the card aisle? Let’s all stay home, say “thanks Dad” every day and be done with it. Not to mention that Father’s Day makes kids without fathers or absent fathers feel like crap when all the other kids in school make paper plate picture collages for their dads.
All of that aside, my main point is, fathers shouldn’t be on equal footing as mothers. WHAT?!?! Mothers are, hands down, more important than fathers. HOW DARE YOU?!?!? Calm down. I don’t mean fathers aren’t important or they’re useless.(most of them anyway) This is not to diminish all that excellent fathers do. My husband is definitely one of the better fathers I know. He does pick up and drop off duty at school, deals with homework meltdowns when I’ve lost my patience, cooks and coaches baseball…he’s a hands on father who deserves a pat on the back and a BIG thank you from his kids. He definitely deserves appreciation. Not a plastic statue that says “World’s Greatest Dad” or a tie that a firefighter will never wear to work.
But for all he does, he will never equal what I’ve done. And he will never be able to either. Not even if I drop dead today. He did not house a soccer playing fetus in his uterus for nine months. He did not have to get fat and swell up and not be able to see his feet. (the operative words are: he did not HAVE TO). He didn’t toss and turn in a hot, sweaty bedroom in the middle of July because all he wanted to do was sleep on his stomach and his body was ten different temperatures at once. He didn’t have to ask a four year old to tie his shoes for him. He didn’t LITERALLY have to pee 32 times a day (yes, I counted). He didn’t feel contractions that made him suck in his breath or think he was going to poop his pants several times a day. And when the big day came, he didn’t actually poop his pants, either. He didn’t endure the pains of childbirth that start in your abdomen, radiate to your back and then shoot down your crotch making you wish someone would just slice you open with a saw already and get the kid out. And he certainly didn’t feel like he was being ripped apart when the kid actually shot out of your hooha after playing peek-a-boo with the doctor for an hour.
No, he sat in the comfy chair at the hospital stuffing his face, napping and occasionally feigning concern for your wellbeing by asking you if you wanted an ice chip or a backrub. No, I don’t want a friggin’ backrub and if you put your hands on me I WILL rip them off your body and beat you with them you jackass who did this to me.
And then after your sweet darling bundle of joy was home and you limped around like a lame deer with fluids leaking from everywhere imaginable, did HE haul his mangled body out of bed when the little one emitted the ear piercing cry of hunger? Nope. He snored away and then had the nerve to ask if you could “keep it down” when you got up in the middle of the night because you was disturbing his much needed beauty rest. Because he had to “actually get up and work.” Yeah, I know. You were sunning by the pool with margaritas when your kids were 2 weeks old. The nerve of you; how insensitive.
The first six weeks of any child’s life sucks for a mother in a way that is incomprehensible to anyone but that mother. Nobody tells you the truth about this either. They tell you it’s “magical” time and you’ll bond with your child breastfeeding and cuddling. Uh, no. Here’s the real scenario: You’ll feel like you’ve been hit by a truck the first day or two, but then, you’ll get some rest in the hospital thanks to the nursery staff and you’ll find yourself saying, hey, this isn’t as bad as I thought. And you’ll pick yourself up and dress the baby to leave the hospital and think you’ll be back on your feet in no time.
Instead, you’ll find out that you brought the wrong baby home. The quiet sleeping baby that needed to be woken up to eat at the hospital has been replaced by a demon that literally screams nonstop and has no need for sleep at all. You will get absolutely no sleep because even if you do fall asleep, you will be jolted awake either by the crying child or the insane notion that you’ve rolled over on the baby (even if he’s in his crib). During the day you’ll no chance to rest and heal your body and by the fourth or fifth day you will be feeling like you have been thrown off the Grand Canyon and ran over by the truck that hit you the first day. This goes on for almost two weeks, but what do you know. You’ve lost all track of time because you’re the walking dead anyway. By the third, fourth and fifth week your body will feel a little better, but you’re still bleeding to death and not sleeping and now in addition to a fatigue that is making you hallucinate, your boobs will feel as if they are going to split at the nipples. Your kid is crying and you are joining it. You’re overwhelmed, tired and hormonal. Not a delightful combo. One morning, my husband took my coffee mug and I sat down on the floor and sobbed hysterically for an hour. Your OB will let you drive again and you will literally have a panic attack and pull over to the side of the road because you have imagined that you left your baby in the car seat in the driveway. Or the roof of the car. Or that you’ve forgotten the baby all together in the house.
No one tells you this. Father don’t go through ANY of this. Even if they get up in the middle of the night (a rare gem), they still will never understand this. At most, they’ll be tired. Oh boo hoo. Come cry to me when it feels like your prostate is going to drop out of your pee hole.
So if fathers get a whole day, I want a whole month. And that’s just unreasonable, so let’s just take our “mother’s day” and give them five minutes of celebration for themselves. Oh wait…that’s how most of them became fathers to begin with…