Tonight I’m probably going to embarrass M (my husband) a little.
I saw something this morning and it was just such a perfect moment that I want to preserve it forever. He didn’t even know I was watching at first, which is partly why it was so perfect.
This morning was a little chaotic. P has caught the family cold and was whiny, the big kids were restless and fighting and we knew we had to start our bedroom reno today. We managed to clear the room out before the kids exploded downstairs, then as I stripped beds and began the 50 loads of laundry I had to do today I could hear M quashing quarrels and enforcing cleanups downstairs.
Saturday is also the day we usually cut our lawn. I knew M was tired and not feeling well, as he too has picked up this super bug H brought home from school. (Sharing is caring!) I encouraged him to just leave the lawn until Monday, but he begrudgingly decided that he just wanted to get it over with. He got dressed and trudged outside, and the weight of everything we needed to get done today was almost visible on his shoulders.
H saw his dad go outside and immediately asked if he could go out and play. Never one to say no to outside time, I helped him get his shoes and sweater, and he ran outside with his Batman and Robin dolls. M had just started the lawn mower, and began to tease H that he was going to “get him”. H started laughing, and climbed up into our “Tree House”–a wooden play structure with a climbing wall and slide in our backyard. I smiled, then carried on upstairs as I heard the mower moving around the backyard.
I went upstairs for something a few minutes later, and realized the mower was off. I peeked out our bedroom window to see what was going on, and my heart just about melted. The lawn mower was sitting discarded beside the deck, and M had crammed his big body up our slide and had H’s Robin doll in his hand. They were having some kind of battle between Batman and Robin, and I saw H gleefully “push” his dad backwards down the slide, winning the battle. (M may or may not have helped H along.)
Not ready to lose, M clamored back up the slide, and H shrieked with delight and pressed his body against the back of the tree house, anticipating his Dad’s (aka Robin’s) next attack. The expression on his face was pure joy, especially as he caught M off guard and managed to actually get him down the slide backwards and head first, winning the war, or whatever it was they were playing. M stood up laughing, his shoulders and back covered in dirt. Gone were the stresses of the morning, for those two minutes, it was just Batman and Robin… and a dad and his son.
I started laughing from the window, revealing my presence and slightly embarrassing M who laughed and waved me away. H went back to his game, and M carried on moving the lawn, probably unaware of the huge smile H had on his face while he played in the tree house.
The thing is, I don’t want to preserve this moment because it was rare… I want to remember it because it’s not. This is the kind of dad that he is pretty much all the time. He is a hands on, down in the dirt, super hero battling Dad who loves his kids more than anything else in the world. Even when he is tired, not feeling great and has a million things to do, he makes time to play Batman and Robin.
In the grand scheme of things, I know the kids won’t remember the nicely cut lawn or the home renos, but they will remember the love, laughter and those moments of playing with their Dad.
And in case you didn’t already know, I think he’s pretty great. ❤️