THE BLOG
06/11/2014 12:33 EDT | Updated 08/11/2014 05:59 EDT

Dads Might Have the World's Toughest Job

© The Light Within Photography via Getty Images

The minute the stick turns +, the spotlight is on the mommas. She lends her body to the growing little pea inside her. Her body is taxed with fluid retention and swollen ankles, heartburn, backaches, and the finale of the nine months is labour and delivery. And, then she lends her mind; around the clock feedings and diaper changes, bouts of crying, sleeplessness and exhaustion.

She lends her soul to taking care of her little pea -- she experiences joy like never before, she worries irrationally, and she roars when her cub is in harm's way.

But, this isn't about momma.

There's someone behind her. A man in the shadows. He rubbed her feet when her ankles were swollen and held her hand when their child entered their lives. He may sleep through the night-time feedings, but is up early morning to let that exhausted momma sleep in for an extra hour or two. He watches the mother of his child give her all -- her mind, body, and soul -- to this wonderful little pea that entered their world not-so long ago. And, he has a new-found appreciation for that woman.

He walks out every morning wishing he didn't have to. He bids farewell to his beautiful baby.

What milestone will he miss today? A glorious toothless smile? A giggle during tummy time? The first time he says dada? No, not that one! He wants to be the first to hear those words!

The video just doesn't do justice.

He walks out every morning wishing he didn't have to. He bids farewell to his beautiful baby.

What chaos will the mother of his child have to face today? Projectile vomit? Inconsolable crying? A postpartum peek in the mirror? No, not that one! He wants to tell her how beautiful those tiger stripes really are.

He wishes she would believe him.

That man, that father, in the shadows deserves a lot of credit. Sure, he might get a break from his fatherhood duties when he steps out that door. And, sure, he might not be in the maternity leave trenches like us mommas. But, his heart certainly is.

And, sometimes, that's even worse.

Sometimes, instead of walking out that door, he would much rather be holding his little monkey in his arms, tickling his toes, and hearing uncontrollable giggles echo through the home. Sometimes, instead of sitting through meetings, he would much rather teaching his little angel the lyrics to his favorite song or showering her with kisses. Sometimes, after a long day of meaningless work, he rushes home in the hopes of catching a few extra moments with his little one before singing lullabies.

Sometimes, he would much rather not walk out that door. I know this because I see the look on my husband's face some mornings. He is leaving a piece of himself behind.

To all the father's who bid farewell each morning to their babies to provide for their families, kudos to you. You just might be doing the world's toughest job. Happy Father's Day.

By Anjali Joshi

This post was originally published on masalamommas.com.

Follow Anjali in twitter at @theresanjali

Read more of Anjali's posts on masalamommas.com here.

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