A Father’s Day in Santa Fe
A typical day for this dad: Get up at 5:45 am, walk the dog, make Atticus, my 16 year old, a healthy smoothie met by Why Dad, Why!, get ready for work, take him to school--Why Dad, Why!, convince him that school actual matters—Why?, go to work, start the evening promoting the virtues of homework--Really Dad?!?, shuttle him to soccer practice—I’m exhausted, nagging for him to clean his room--Why and Whatever!, then desperate pleading for him to shower and groom--Ugh, Why!?!. Sleep, don’t dream, repeat…
I am not alone in this. My friends and I who are parents commiserate any chance we can, yet simultaneously agree that the pain-in-the-toosh push and pull between our kids and us is key to reaching the other, deeply rewarding side--seeing the smile on my Atticus’ face when he presents a hard earned B+ on his class presentation, or the sweaty, ecstatic bounce in his step after he’s scored his first goal, or the shy, but bold moment when he asks for grooming and romantic advice as prom approaches. I wear fatherhood like a worn out, sweaty flannel shirt following a week’s worth of cutting, gathering, hauling, and stacking cords of wood; calloused, bent, and exhausted as I hit the pillow, but full of deep, earnest pride in a job well done.
The Atypical Santa Fe Dad Day – June 21: Each dad drops different hints on how the family can pamper him; some dream of the day their son goes with them to Capitol Ford to oogle the latest Mustang convertible, or go look at tires at Big O (a subtle way to remind the son that you are his non-stop taxi service). Some dads get shepherded to The Firebird to look at grills (do they love YOU or just your grilling greatness?) and fireplace inserts for the TV room so a cold winter night can be met with Santa Fe Spirits Colkeegan Whiskey on the rocks while watching the Dallas Stars take a championship hockey game.
For me? Same early morning dog walk, followed by an Atticus-made latte on the counter. A leisurely shower is followed by lunch at a Del Charro to enjoy a Mexican Mule and their famous green chile cheeseburger. The afternoon’s spent tooling on our bikes – how to change a tire with the least number of swear words possible, oiling the chain, and finally, how to awkwardly bunny hop onto a railroad tie without risking our posterity, then a short ride on the Dale Ball Trails. As the evening cools, my family takes me to The Ranch House for succulent serving of their chopped brisket and a cold Guiness.
Another full day for this Santa Fe Dad, but one bookended in love and family listening to this dad’s oh-so subtle hints, making the other 364 days out of the year worth every second.
For excellent resources and advocacy for fathers, see Fathers.com.