Fathers day in confinement: kiwi dads share their thoughts on rest, relaxation and responsibility
Dads have a captive audience for Father’s Day this year with the country under Tier 3 and 4 lockdown restrictions. We spoke to a few Dads across the country about what the day means to them.
Matt Richens, Christchurch – Father of two, husband of a
I love Father’s Day even though I’m ready for socks and underwear so the kids are going to have to work a little harder this year.
I’m lucky enough that my kids and my wife are making a big deal about Father’s Day, although I’m pretty sure the beer festival ticket I requested won’t show up. I’ll take care of that myself.
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“Daddy’s, daddy’s.” “
Oops, that reminds me – I also have a father. Somehow I forget his Father’s Day until Thursday of every year. As he Google, “Can you deliver Bluff Oysters to Level 3”?
I remember every year on Father’s Day I complained to my old man that it was never Children’s Day.
“Everyday, the fucking day of the children”. NOW I know what he meant.
I asked Harper and Archie, 6 and 4, what they think I would like to do on Father’s Day.
“You probably just want to sit in your corner of the couch and have a nice cold beer,” Harper said. BINGO!
I’ll take them for a bike ride in the forest first – I have to earn it.
I’m one of the lucky ones, I know my wife appreciates me – she tells me and shows it to me. But Father’s Day is cool. It’s okay for them to make a big deal out of me.
I could pretend to be stoic and cool about it all, but secretly I like it. I’m going to get myself brewed a few coffees during the day, some extra hugs, and some handmade cards. Archie will tell me that I am the “best father in the whole world”. May this continue for a long time. I’m not crying, you’re crying.
Shout too, to all the hard working dads and solo moms, foster parents grandparents, stepfathers too. Happy Father’s Day.
Happy Father’s Day to my daddy Steve too. This is your gift.
André Ngāpō (Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Awa, Ngāpuhi and Ngāti Tamaterā) – Raumati Sud, father of three children
For me, Father’s Day is more of an experience for the kids than a day that concerns me (although I’m sure I’ll be pampered a bit). My youngest son is 7 years old and this is the opportunity to grow in him the concept of whakanuia, to honor and celebrate another. I’ll get some sleep while our little man helps make breakfast.
He will undoubtedly have created a card, and there may be other goodies in store. Being in level 3 lockdown means we’ll be staying close to home, so no cafe lunch or picnic outside of town by the river this time, but a whānau stroll on Raumati Beach for our daily exercise will be just perfect. My 20 year old twins are going to message or call from Raglan. 20, wow! It’s my 20th Father’s Day, time flies.
I will probably think about it. I am going to call my step dad to tell him how much I have enjoyed the almost 35 years he has spent in my life. And I will end the day with a toast to my koro (whose photo will be on our altar) and to my uncles, the important men who raised me. Ngā mihi ki ku Pāpā!
Oliver Webb, Tauranga – father of three
A Father’s Day in lockdown probably isn’t a huge change for me. Every year I get asked what beer I want for Father’s Day. I mean something luxurious, but since I know I’m paying for it, I choose a medium lager. Since it’s containment, I may have to double the amount. Big size chocolate bar because it is better value for money than those variety boxes that have too many ripe cherries and Turkish delicacies. My children tell me that they like Turkish delights, too bad, it’s Father’s Day.
My wife will want to spoil me, but integrating the purchase into our weekly lockdown shop will take the fun away.
Most of the time I’m the first one (besides my wife with her boot camp / morning walks), tiptoeing around my own house like a burglar while making coffee. Today my wife is going to sneak in and inflate balloons first. My sons will give me handmade cards, made with love, but they will all remind me that I am old, or fat, or that my hair is gray. At least the confinement keeps me from feeling guilty about not visiting my own father.
We will cycle around the neighborhood, like most days in lockdown, and eat cheese toast for lunch before playing soccer in the backyard. I could start drinking a little earlier, especially if the sun is out. I will cook meat and eat as much as I like, because I have convinced myself that it is cheaper than eating out. To top it off, there’s an All Blacks game that’s going to be great to fall asleep in front of, and since it’s Father’s Day, no one can tell me. Overall it looks like a great day, but my wife will need another week of lockdown to recover.
Clark Pullan – Waipu, father of three
We used to have a big reunion at a local restaurant and bar with celebrated fathers, uncles, grandfathers and kids everywhere. They were a lot of fun and a great relaxation and release for the fathers.
For some reason, these celebrations were dropped. Too bad, really.
I guess if you ask me what I would like / expect this would be my answer, come back to these celebrations, a good carefree afternoon enjoying reuniting with family and friends, a good meal, a good drink; Happy Days.
As I get more gray hair day by day, simple pleasures like this seem to have drifted away from the perceived complexity of life over the past 10 years.
Everyone is too busy (not) she doesn’t like it, someone didn’t like someone’s post so they died for them.
That’s it, it’s my second wish for Father’s Day, social media can ‘f’ right away.
I still have a zero footprint in this area and intend to stay that way. For every good thing on social media, things ten times bad, morally bad things, seem to come up and that’s why I think we would all be better off without it.
Father’s Day, no social media day, that’s all! This is what I want, but how do we plan it with everyone, check the restaurant menu for allergy issues for a little darling, and assess how the day went after?
Jonathan Howe (Ngati Maniapoto) – Palmerston North, father of two
I’m a typical Kiwi dad in that I don’t like too much hustle and bustle on Father’s Day. A house menu, a box of toasted almonds and a cooked breakfast are more than enough to satisfy me.
I love that my kids want to spend time with me on Father’s Day, but I don’t think they need to “honor” me for just being their father. It wasn’t their choice, after all.
In saying this, I am very happy to be their father as they are both happy, fun-loving and affectionate children who are the center of the universe for their mother and me.
Father’s Day, then, for me, is all about remembering how lucky I am and thinking about the responsibility that comes with being a dad. The fiery nature of my children means that they can sometimes be a handful.
I try my best to be a modern dad who listens to their feelings and perspectives. But I am far from being the perfect parent. I can be cranky; I can get too wrapped up in my job and can’t help but have fun teasing children to the point of annoying them.
But I work hard to be as good a role model as possible and whenever I have parenting failure I submit to long periods of doubt. If after a long day I have been irritable with children, I am instantly consumed with guilt and spend the night worrying that I have triggered a catastrophic chain of events that will hamper their ability to become members. functionalities of the company.
I know this is, for the most part, ridiculous, but I think no one should overlook the role fathers play as influencers in their children’s lives. So while I appreciate how happy my kids really are to help their mom make cards and gifts for me on Father’s Day, what I need them to know is is that all the fun is mine.