A Letter to Dad
Growing up my birth father was never around and my step father was in the house, but to be frank with you; we weren’t very close. I never really learned the things that most young boys were suppose to learn from another male in the house. I didn’t have someone sit me down and show me how to shave or explain to me the difference in shaving creams or shaving brushes. I pretty much learned as I went. There were tons of try’s and plenty of mistakes. I even learned my way around a barbershop but believe me it wasn’t very easy. The sad part about all of this is that it’s the story of most young men growing up in black culture. The house isn’t a whole home and it has it effects in many ways.
With Father’s Day being today, I took some time to reflect on this subject and I had some laughs and some saddens because of it. Grooming is a passed down art or at least it should be. There is nothing more special then watching a father show his son the secrets of getting a great pass with the razor across his cheek. How to heal his sons first cut while shaving or how to pick out the right aftershave moisturizer. Now this might be a small thing, or a not so popular topic, and most people might ask me why am I posting about this. It’s because I think of all the things I would have loved to learn while growing up would be shaving. No not fixing cars or how to put a condom on using some odd fruit or vegetable. Shaving and personal grooming would be my pick. As small as that is, that’s what I look back on and wish another male would of took the time to show me.
On this Father’s Day, I take the time and say thank you to the fathers who have taken the time out of their busy schedule to be a dad. Not just being a dad, but earning that title. Little moments like taking the time to show your son how to shave or showing him how to manage his growing body is not about the little moment or task. It’s about taking the time to give him something he will never forget and that’s how to properly groom and the moments with dad.
Now that I am in my late 20s and I am getting married soon, I’m pretty sure the little ones are not too far behind. As men of color, I say this to my other brothers out in the world. Let’s not have our sons figure the little things out by themselves. The world, the money and the goals can wait when it comes to the sons we were blessed with. Let’s break the cycle and give our sons those moments.