Welcome at the blog of Dini Commandeur. I've written quite a lot of columns for various magazines. I also write short stories every now and then. These columns and stories are available for everybody at this blog. I'll release new columns and stories periodically.


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Every day daddies day

Monday 10 October 2016 I keep liking that nice sight. Young daddies behind the buggy. And I melt when they are talking to their child. Again this morning, when I was on my way to the supermarket and passed by a father and child. “Flow”, the child in the buggy said and pointed to a flowery garden. “Yes”, the father answered. “These is nice flowers, aren’t they? Those is the most beautiful flowers!” The child laughed. Because the ‘flows’were beautiful indeed. Another father who just left the supermarket with his child in a buggy, let his child hold a package of soup. “You can hold that for me for a little while” he said. “You can do that very well.”And the child proudly held the soup tight in his little fists.
Such daddies know how it should be. No activities like ‘apping of calling during pushing the buggy.
Or, the most terrible sight and in the past it was seen everywhere: fathers who pushed the buggy with only one hand. The other hand was in the trousers pocket. Psychologists discovered that daddies like that really didn’t want to walk with their child at all. They didn’t find that masculine and were ashamed of it. By pushing the buggy with only one hand they created distance.
Fortunately times have changed. In the meantime a man behind the buggy is a normal part of life. At a busy Saturday it is not strange at all to see friendly daddies together behind the buggy in town. After shopping they often go all together sitting in a pavement. It is nice to see that daddies have so much more contact with their small children than the daddies in the past.
“So you can see how beautiful these daddies days are”, I said contentedly to a friend. But she looked sour and nagged that it isn’t fair that most daddies have only one daddies day a week. Just óne day of taking care and the mothers can do the rest, she said. She exaggerated. Because the daddies take care on the other days too. Then they also switch a diaper and give a bottle. Or they drive the bigger children to soccer, go along to swimming class and help with homework when it is needed. They are also often good in repairing a tyre and do other odd jobs in which they are better than mothers. With fathers you can play and horse around, with fathers you can laugh. And no, this time not a list of things in which mothers are better than dads. That list is long, that is known. But it is almost Father’s Day. And that’s why every buggy dad and all other nice dads are celebrated.
By the way, even when it is not Father’s Day, careful fathers, including foster -and stepfathers should get a well-meant compliment once in a while.
Fatherhood is forever, for life. Every day it is daddies day. And a loving dad knows that a good contact with one’s child is the most important thing. And that contact doesn’t have to be comprehensive all the time. It is just as important to have a nice simple chat with your child in the buggy. For the conversation may lack depth, it still is fascinating. For example when the buggy child sees the garden and pointed to the “flows”. And the daddy agrees that it are beautiful flowers. They agree, those two. And I melt. Lovely, such a dad who isn’t watching his smartphone, but pushing the buggy with two hands. And who discovers the most beautiful flowers in a little garden through the eyes of his child.

Translated by Astrid Kostelijk and Piet Commandeur.
June 2016

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