I was watching The Waltons yesterday and it hit me like a ton of bricks. If you’re a fan of the show, you might know what I’m talking about.
“Daddy” was a staple word in the show. All of the kids young and old alike call their dad that. At first, I thought it was kind of weird for a grown man to call his dad daddy, but after a while, it grew on me. Then I began to understand why.
The kids had strong relationship with their dad. The Bible uses the word abba, which is a word that suggests intimacy. In other words, it suggests a deep, loving bond between father and child.
Today when one gets called daddy, it is almost always in a dimeaning context and often has a sexual connotation. There’s also the sugar-daddy thing. in each of these contexts, there is an element of being old, much older, than the younger lady.
They say that a girl will usually look for a husband just like her daddy. The idea is that daddy better treat his baby girl right so she knows what to look for in her future husband. The same is true for a mother and son bond, except that a boy will look for a woman like his mom because he will always need a motherly figure in his life to tell him what to do. Well, that’s what I imagine about the mom and son bond.
For real, though, a boy will always need his mom in his life, but there comes a time when mom isn’t enough. He needs his daddy to teach him how to be a man and how to work hard to provide for his family should he ever have one someday. Mom is always gonna be there for her little boy, even when he is a grown man. Mom will be there to wipe his tears away and kiss the boo-boos. Daddy will be there to kick his butt when he needs some sense knocked into him.
In an ideal world, the above would be normal.
I am gonna be real for a minute. The man who should have been my daddy left when I was real young. I grew up without my daddy being involved in my life. My mom did remarry when I was a young teenager, and I am now 37. Even as an adult man, I have a very difficult time thinking of him in terms of dad. I have been able to drop the “step” part when talking about him around other people, but have never been able to call him “daddy” much less “dad.” I believe this is because I grew up without my dad when I was really in need of one and when I did get one, he also grew up without a dad. So, it has really been a challenge for me not knowing even by my step dad what being a dad is all about.
Being a dad has been one of the most challenging, yet rewarding things in my life. I don’t claim to have it all down, but all of my kids call me dad and the youngest ones call me daddy. Makes me feel loved and special.