Thank you, for your friendship.
I so often hear stories of people trying to co-parent with someone they hate or is constantly absent, and every time I am more thankful for you and our peaceful relationship. What we have goes beyond effective co-parenting into real friendship, and I will be forever grateful that we have gotten to this point. We both know it hasn’t always been all sunshine and rainbows, but even on our worst days as friends we still cooperated peacefully and effectively as parents. We’re allowed to disagree on things. Knowing each other so well we also know exactly what buttons to push, which can be not only mildly entertaining but also incredibly frustrating. When it comes right down to it though, we put our personal differences aside and focus on what’s best for our daughter. You’re so much better at being an involved friend than I am, always asking about my family and my day-to-day nonsense. You know me better than almost anyone else in the world, sometimes even better than I know myself – which can also be incredibly frustrating. But you know every fault and quirk and you accept them all.
Thank you, for all that you teach Skye.
You teach her all the great things dads should get to teach their daughters, like how to ride a bike and kick a soccer ball. You work with her on learning Spanish. You teach her healthy eating habits in ways she’ll just never learn from me. You strive to get our picky eater to try new and healthy things, when we both know she gets that particular trait from me. You think about her nutrition more times in a day than I can ever manage to. More than any of that, you teach her patience, manners and kindness with your every action as an example. You encourage her to get up and dust herself off when she falls, and you’re there to lend a loving hand when she can’t quite do it by herself. You bolster her adventurous spirit by letting her get as dirty as possible, and jump in every puddle she sees.
Thank you, for loving our daughter so very much.
From the moment I saw you hold your baby girl for the first time in that hospital room, I knew you were going to be an amazing dad. I watched as you looked down in awe with tears in your eyes at the wonder you had helped create, and felt not a single doubt that you would do anything in this world for her happiness. You show up for her in every important way a dad should for his daughter. You drive thousands of miles back and forth from Denver to get your baby girl, and I know how deeply it hurts you each time you have to leave her again. When I send Skye to you for three weeks I can sleep soundly at night knowing that she is in the best possible hands, second only to my own. Skye will never feel any doubt of the love you have for her; you will always be her rock and foundation, her protector and her voice of reason. She may be mommy’s little mini-me, but she will also always be daddy’s girl.
Thank you, for the sacrifices you’ve made.
You’ve thanked me more than once for the sacrifices I’ve made to raise our daughter, now it’s my turn. You put our daughter’s wellbeing first in every decision you make. You sacrifice time away from her, which I know causes you immense pain and anxiety, but only so that you can better provide for her future. You have grown into the most amazing father I could ever have hoped for Skye to have. I am so proud of you, and I mean that in the least condescending way possible. Our daughter is so lucky she gets to call you daddy, and I intend to remind her of that very often.
Thank you, for being the amazing father you are.
You handle toddler tantrums with more level-headedness and ease than I could even dream of. You have endless patience and also the stern voice that is sometimes needed to break through our daughter’s stubbornness. You are a constant presence in her life; though for now she has to go days missing you, she will never have to wonder whether or not her daddy is missing her too. You shower her with love and affection, while at the same time have the resilience not to give in to the adorable face and her every desire. You set boundaries for our daughter and are consistent in the lessons you teach her. I know neither of us planned to become parents when we did, but I am constantly reminded how lucky I am that life took us on this particular detour together. Thank you for being the intelligent, adventurous, witty, fun-loving person you are, and for teaching our daughter to be the same way.
Thank you – for being you.