“My daddy?” she asks after daycare.
“Yep, I’m your daddy,” I would say. Then she would smile. I totally understand Tim McGraw’s song “Grown Men Don’t Cry” now.
But back to the shoes. They are light-up Paw Patrol shoes. My little girl ran around the living room making the shoes light up. Every few seconds she would ask if I had seen the lights on her shoes. Then she would ask mom, the girls, my oldest son. “See my shoes?”
I will be honest, I was hit with the fact that I would soon not buy another pair of light-up shoes. I’m pretty sure that every one of my kids have gotten a pair of light-up shoes. They would run around making them light up. They would smile. It was the best day of their young lives the day they got light-up shoes. Such a simple thing, but brings such a pure joy.
My oldest son was eating a quick breakfast, he had speech practice this morning. But he stopped and responded to his sister. I wondered if I had done anything for him so he felt like he was having the best day of his young life. I was a washed with dad guilt. Raising six kids, being a husband, being in the middle of figuring out a career, can make life feel restricted and stressful. But it is the small things that make the biggest difference in this world.
Love is expressed in the small things, an unexpected hug, a funny GIF sent in an email/text. A handwritten note can clear away the storm clouds. A favorite drink or candy bar can change a person’s view. Or having pockets…
My daughter stops in front of me. Her hands are stuffed into her little front pockets of her pants. “I have pockets!” It is not a question. Then she takes off running with her hands still stuffed into her pockets. My dad instincts kick in, I hope she doesn’t fall as she makes it to the front door.
“My coat?” she asks with a smile.
It’s going to be a great day, even if I do shed a tear.