Happy Father’s Day DanO!

FullSizeRender-99

I would like to record what happens in Jack’s bathroom on Sunday mornings. It’s a routine that takes at least 40 minutes and involves laughing, singing and plenty of four-letter-words. Dan does it so that I can have a break from the morning routine, but I usually can’t sleep through the commotion. Instead, I lay in bed and count my blessings.

Dan has always been a hands-on father with both the kids. He once spent an entire night waiting in line to insure Jack got into our favorite pre-school, and coached Anna’s lacrosse team for so long that I sometimes need to apologize to her varsity coaches now for Dan’s sideline behavior. Even with all his business travel, Dan tries to make every home lacrosse game to cheer on Number 22 (Bananz/Anna) and schedules business around IEP meetings and important school events for JackO.

I sometimes wonder what our family would have looked like without ALD taking center stage. Would we have hung together so tightly or would we have gotten distracted by trivial nonsense and focused less on family? I can’t say for sure, but I can say that, no matter the reason, I do appreciate how close our little foursome is.

I get a lot of credit for holding up our house of cards, but the truth is that while I do my share, it’s Dan that really holds it all together. He knows what each of us needs. Heated discussions with Anna about political topics, snuggling on the couch with Jack watching his favorite Impractical Jokers. And, he is the calm voice of reason, balancing out my crazy. When I get stuck under my pile of Social Security/Medicaid/medical bills bullshit, he reminds me of what is important. AND that we are a family that survives, “Just take things day by day.”

This morning we woke up in Connecticut where we were visiting family. Despite a long night of festivities and it being Father’s Day, Dan still managed to continue his Sunday morning ritual – bathing, changing, toiling his eighteen year old son. It takes parenting to a whole new level. There is a fair amount of cursing that goes on in the bathroom on Sunday mornings, but there is also a song for everything. Not sure how you manage to keep coming up with new ones, but keep singing DanO!

Happy Father’s Day!

Love, Jess

I’d also like to mention two other remarkable fathers – Nonno and PopPop. We love you both!!!

Dan, the man

DSC09985

Happy Father Day!

Here’s a truth. I fell off the “Perfect Parent Pedestal” years ago. Jack and Anna discovered early in their lives that I am human. They adore me and respect me (most of the time), but they are fully aware that I am full of faults.

Dan still lives high up on a pedestal. He walks into a room, and both of his children light up. Anna’s in awe of her father’s knack for languages and amazed each night watching him play Jeopardy. There is very little he doesn’t know. And Jack – to Jack, Dan is a superhero. He is the person who takes him on adventures and doesn’t complain when there is a necessary bathroom stop.

Sometimes I’m a little jealous of Dan, but here’s another truth – he has earned his role as a superhero. Most men would cower at the challenges our family has faced. Most men would focus all of their attention on their careers or a bottle. Not Dan. Although he’s had a successful career, his priority has always been his family and his proudest accomplishment has been his children.

Even now, as life has things scattered a bit, Dan comes home and doesn’t miss a beat. Before he has a chance to take off his jacket, we all fight over “first hug” as Dan dives right into “How’d finals go?”, “Any news about Jack’s new class?”, “How many more days until Block Island?”.

Next time you see Dan, ask him about his kids. Listen to him talk about his beautiful Bananz (aka Anna), who rocks it as much on the field as in the classroom. Listen to him talk about Booger Brown (aka Jack) and his bravery and strength. Better yet, come to Clinton Avenue and listen to Dan talk to Anna about history and then listen to him sing loudly as he bathes his teenage son. You will walk away (in tears) knowing that Dan is truly an amazing father and we are one LUCKY family.

Love you Dan. And, special love being sent to Nonno and PopPop – our two other favorite Dads!!

Love, Jess

IMG_3793

FYI 10 more days until Block Island.