One daddy blogger in New South Wales got the sweetest tattoo in memory of his stillborn son.
Brad Kearns, a father of two, shared a photo of his ink via Facebook early September while Father's Day was being celebrated in Australia.
"Do you remember the first time you touched your child's hands?" the post read. "You rubbed your thumb across the top of their fingers as they hold onto yours. You grab their entire hand and hold it in your fist. You give it a little squeeze to let them know that you're there; and you sit in awe of their vulnerability. And at that moment you make your silent promise. A promise to protect them. To care for them. To give them your all. A promise to be the best parent you can be."He continued:
I lay here on the floor of my boys room as they drift off to sleep. I think of the promises I made them and I reflect on the years passed. I hope I am becoming the role model I told them I would be.
I begin thinking of these handprints around my neck. These tiny little hands that are positioned like an eternal cuddle. These are the hands of our first son. His name was 'Buddy'. It wasn't always going to be his name, but it seemed right at the time. When we met him for the first time and he was peacefully sleeping. It just seemed so right. He was my little Buddy. The handprints serve as my daily reminder.
From that day forward I was a dad. The fact that we couldn't take him home with us didn't change a thing. The fact I would never teach him to kick a ball didn't matter. We held his hands and we called him our own. He was the first little boy I ever made that promise to.
I remember on the next Father's Day I didn't expect anything. I got a card. I received a few lovely text messages. I was still a dad. It meant the world to me. It made my promise real.
If you know a dad, a stepdad, a foster dad, or a family with two dads... Make an effort this Father's Day. Let them know their promise was real. It will mean the world to them too.
Happy Fathers Day Dads!
Yes, we're crying, too.
Kearns later told the Daily Mail Australia that he wrote the emotional post for parents who went through similar losses.
"We have a lot of people around us who have been through similar misfortunes as us and I think it's nice for those people to be included and to feel included," he said. "It's also nice for those people when awareness is created around the topic because it gives them a chance to feel validated as a parent."
What a brave father!