Dads are some of my favorite people to photograph. They are usually less than thrilled about having professional photos taken, but by the end of the session they have turned into my saving grace. They are the ones who tickle, flip, toss, and piggy-back the smiles onto the kids’ faces. They have endless amounts of patience during the toddler tantrums, and they magically appear with a wipe to fix runny noses. While the kids are the ones wearing the Superman capes, the dads are often the unsung heroes of family life.
This Father’s Day, I wanted to recognize just a few of the amazing fathers that have gotten in front of my camera (with a loving nudge from the mamas, of course – ha!). A few weeks back, I asked my clients to share their favorite memory with their own father. I really enjoyed reading their stories, and I hope you will too.
“For whatever reason, the memory that always comes to mind first is my dad and me doing dishes together when I was young (age 5-6). My mom was a nurse working night shift, so my dad and I often did dishes while she was catching a few hours of sleep before her shift. He would wash, and I would sit on the counter drying the dishes and chatting about school, friends, etc. I cherished those conversations and time together. Now that I’m an adult, I am grateful that he modeled traits of gender equality and shared parenting that were probably uncommon in that era.”
“I unfortunately don’t have any memories with my own father. He left my family when I was two years old and later passed away. What I do have is beautiful memories of this past year witnessing my amazing husband become the best father in the world to our 13-month-old baby boy. He has genuinely restored my faith that a father can be great. I am so proud of him and want to wish him the happiest of Father’s Days!”
“I have so many memories but my favorite one is actually from not that long ago. My dad and sister came up to visit to help me buy a new car. One of the evenings we went to Strega for dinner in the North End and all had a bit too much wine. My dad became very nostalgic and started talking about how lucky he had been in life. To come from a poor rural village in India, make his way to Canada and then the US, meeting my mother, and all that he had built and become today. My dad is not a sharer (I suppose this where I get this) and this was the first time he had ever described his perspective. I think about this every once in a while and reflect on how lucky I am to have the parents that I did.”
“My favorite memory with my Dad was him walking me down the aisle. When we got to the top of the garden path, before we walked the aisle, a rush of nerves passed through both of us. Almost immediately my Dad said, ‘Do want me to tell you a joke?’ I said yeah. He ended up telling me jokes the whole walk down to the altar. By the time I reached my then-fiancé and Pastor, I was cracking up and the nerves had passed. “
“I would say my favorite memory of childhood with my dad was him coaching my baseball team even though he wasn’t a huge sports fan. I think back on it and wonder what was going on in his mind, and what he taught us little kids.”
“When I was little, my dad used to take my brother and me out to play soccer every week. He was from Mexico where soccer is a huge part of the culture, so it was important to him to pass on his love of the sport to us. We would go out and kick and the ball around, and then we would go out to get a soda afterward. He was a tough coach but those are some of my favorite memories.”