Friday, June 18, 2010

This Little Girl's Daddy


Closing out the week is our resident "playlist" expert and NOLA boy - D to the Moe! Thanks again to all of the fathers who have shared their experiences with us this week - and who reminded us that there ARE fathers in our communities who love, take care of, guide, teach, protect, nurture and uplift our children every day. I am in awe of you all, and feel truly inspired by your words and sentiments. I am blessed to know each of you! Your children couldn't ask for better Daddies!

This Little Girl's DMoe.

As Father's Day approaches, I'm reminded of all the reasons why I'm fortunate to be "this little girl's daddy." My daughter and I have a pretty good understanding of how things work. For example, if she and I are riding in the car, and we hear Prince's "Pop Life," I sing Prince's part - "Don't ya know straight hair ain't got no curl..," and she chimes in with Wendy's background, "No curl!" It's automatic.

But there are many other nuances that make us who we are. For all the challenges I face as I do my best to raise her, it's the little things that make the journey a fun, rewarding one. I'm invested in her future in many ways other than the 529 College Savings Plan, or the allowance she's told to save for books when she's on her way there. One of the most important things that I'm trying to teach is the approach to life.

If you try your best, and do things with flair and a fervent attitude, you will go that much farther in life. So, if you want to collect Barbies, learn all there is to learn about Barbies and become the expert in your 3rd grade class. Collect them all, and pay meticulous attention to keeping up with the clothes that came with each one. Naked Barbies on your floor are simply "not acceptable." She has yet to nail that one - and as a dad, how they ALWAYS end up naked is beyond me - (she prefers to say "between outfits")...but I digress.

The concept has many sides, but I think you get the point. On the soccer field, I invest in her psyche OFF the field by downloading as much "winning attitude" into her as possible in the hopes that it translates ON the field. We watch tons of soccer on TV (she loves Telemundo games best, because the commentators say "GOOOOOOOOAAAAAAL!" when someone scores). We play FIFA Soccer on PS3, we work out with soccer balls on the practice fields long after the team is gone, and we are constantly talking about pretty much ANY "kick-ass" individual player in sports and how they worked said ass off to be the best...(but not in those exact words).

It's the "work ethic" side of it all. Here's a line overheard recently:

- "Sure, another girl may be bigger than you, and she may have played longer than you, but NOBODY should ever be able to outwork you. EVER. If you keep doing that, you'll always be successful. Got it?"

- "Got it."

So at the games, while other parents say, "good try" or "good job" arbitrarily when their kid displays any kind of effort whatsoever (or lack thereof - I HATE that), I choose a different route that my girl responds to each and every time. When she is making plays, and fighting hard, I say so by calling her number out loud. "Good work 16!" But, when she's getting outplayed or out-hustled, I'm equally encouraging in the same regard. "Let's GO 16, pick it up!"

And that's the thing...I love her enough to be hard on her, and I'll never settle for anything less than her best. EVER.

She knows my voice, but she knows it's me by exactly what is said. This past season, I watched her turn on the juice time and time again after I yelled her number. But then, something odd happened. We would talk after the games about what went well and what didn't, and she said "I heard you Daddy, before you even said anything!" Wow. For the long journey ahead, each little bit helps tremendously - because she's starting to hear daddy's voice before things happen. Golden.

Prince music and soccer aside, as stated earlier, my daughter and I have a good understanding. She knows that if we're playing, we play hard and have the most fun that we can have with everything. She also knows that I DON'T play when it comes to her schooling, how she treats people, and her conduct as a young girl that grows into a teenager, that becomes a young lady, that turns into a woman.

My wish is for my child to be the best she can be at whatever she chooses to be. Mind you, I don't have pie-in-the-sky parenting dreams of her being successful just so I can tell my friends that she is, but more that she reaches the true potential that she's indeed capable of. I believe it's just the job that comes with being "DADDY."

Many times, fatherhood is missed in the celebration of a person's success or an understanding of their failures in life. As I live every day, I try to see each day as an opportunity to give my daughter the best that I can give, which hopefully will lead to her blossoming into the best she can be. Recently, she and I took on a project to build an Eiffel Tower made of Legos. The 3, 872 pieces and 3 main sections divided into 3 instruction books (80 pages in each) was a huge undertaking for the two of us. While my patience was tested with the construction and supervision of this 8-year old who did half the work, the project brought us closer in a brand new way. By the end, we were hugging like we won the Super Bowl, and the fact that she saw the "Taj Mahal" in Lego's and said, "WE HAVE TO DO THAT ONE NEXT!" is exactly the point of why we took it on.

We can accomplish anything, and long after I'm gone, I hope that the ideal lives on within her spirit.

I thought it was a good idea to videotape our work, so that for years to come, she could have it to remember how we accomplished something so big together. In the spirit of this Father's Day, I'd like to share that with this blog. Hopefully, you will find it as inspiring as it still is for me. Each time I watch, I'm reminded of how vital my work is, and how much it means to be "this little girl's daddy."

Happy Father's Day to each and every one.

Your friend and mine,

- DMoe


Yolanda said...

First beeeyotches!

All the fatherly blogs this week have been so awesome. You can tell you daddies love your babies and that's what we need in the world!

Go Team Daddy!

Annamaria said...

Shooting my new BB gun at Yolanda(told ya'll I gave up the taser)

DMoe your daughter is BEAUTIFUL. She looks like her dad like most of these lil girls tend to do. I love that these fathers who may not necessarily be with their kids every day KNOW how important it is for them to PARENT...
It's not always about having fun & playing. You guys are being hard on your kids & setting standards & teaching them what's important. And that will definitely shape who they become.


And to all the dad's on this blog HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!!

Special shoutout to my dad, my father in law, my brothers, my brother in law, Austin's nephew lil Rob (who is an AWESOME stepdad and an amazing young man), Uncle Stan & Sophia's ninos(godfather) John. With you men in her life I expect wonderful things from Sophia & I expect no man to get near her until she's at least 30! lol


P.S.-Shout out to my baby daddy..I'll make sure you have a wonderful daddy's day! I love you & 365 days til you become my hubby!!! :)

Stef said...

How cute was that video!!!??? DMoe, your daughter is precious and I LOVE that she has on a beret in the video for her "French" Eifel Tower :) She's lucky to have you in her life every single day.

This week has been awesome, thanks Brooke and thanks to all the fathers who shared their stories of being a dad with us.

Jay said...

It's so great putting faces to names. Seeing DMoe in action with his daughter was great. You can tell they're a team, and that he loves her but is also raising her and guiding her.

Like the rest of the posts on the blog this week, this was great. Thanks again B for showing positive, black fathers doing their thing - cuz the opinion of the black father is that they're absent or apathetic. You showed that there are men out there who take care of and love their children unconditionally with pride. Happy Father's Day to all the fathers out there.

Geeque said...

Great Blog DMoe, your daughter looks just like you. Based on your parenting, your daughter has a great future ahead of her!! Great Job Bruh!!!!

We live in a society where we constantly hear negative comments about Black men as fathers. In my case it has been a blessing to be around black men that have proven quite the opposite. My immediate circle of friends consists of fraternity brothers who partied hard in college as powerz indicated. We all came from different backgrounds, some had fathers in their lives and some did not. We could never have imagined ourselves being responsible parents, but yet every brother I know has become just that!!

As Ms. Penn stated yesterday, it is great to know that Black Love does exist and that there are great fathers out there doing what needs to be done as a Daddy. This weeks Blog ended on a great note!!

I thank you Brooke for allowing myself and all the Fathers on the Blog to express their feelings on the subject of fatherhood.

Based on the guest Blogs we read this week, we all know not to believe all the negative comments we hear about Black Men as fathers in our communities.

Once again Happy Fathers Day to all…..

Brooke said...

This week has been great, you all rock! Thank you for guest blogging this week!

The Cable Guy said...

Great Blog DMoe! Your daughter is beautiful and clearly on the right track in life. Kudos to you and raising a great young lady!

Can we talk basketball, or do we have to wait til next week? :) LOL!

Brooke said...

Let's wait til next week :)

DMoe said...

All, thanks very much for the well wishes.

I'm very fortunate and blessed to play the role in this delightful kid's life, and the journey continues.


Stef said...

Yes, let's wait til next week. Nobody wants to hear about basketball anyway :)

DMoe said...

@ Cable guy...Thanks bruh, and by the way -



Brooke said...

I guess waiting til next week went out the window - guess you didn't have to bother asking Cable Guy :)

The Cable Guy said...

Brooke, I was willing to stick to your rules. DMoe broke the rules - not me!

Stef said...

uh...I thought Brooke said wait til next week!

nobody cares!

Brooke said...

Cable Guy,

I know you didn't break the rules sweetie :) I said you shouldn't bother asking only because I'm sure SOMEONE would post something about the Lakers regardless :)

Powerz aka Baby Daddy for the next 365 days! said...

Dmoe, you are among the chosen few who will ensure the next generation will have the tools to succeed!

PS, New Orleans in 2 weeks. Don't forget about us!

Jaz said...

Let's not taint the father's day blogs with talk about the Lakers. Let's keep it positive :)

great blog Dmoe.

Annamaria said...

Is it to much to ask to have a countdown clock added to the blog??? LMAO..

Also honorable mentions to those men who haven't "fathered" a child yet BUT who may play a special role in a child's life. You are still very important in those kids upbringing... It really does take a whole village..

DMoe said...

Sorry yall, I couldnt resist.

@Powerz - I got yall kid. No worries. A detailed email's forthcoming.


Stef said...

Let's not talk about basketball next week either :)

Anonymous said...

This week has been filled with amazing fatherly insight. We always hear about the deadbeat DAD. I'm so glad Brooke took this week to showcase all of the great fathers out there.You gentleman rock and are wonderful examples of what today's fathers are.You all inspire me and remind me of what I great father I had growing up. Happy fathers day to you all.


Serena W. said...

I loved the part of the naked Barbies are "between outfits")...

LOL! DMoe you are classic!

What a wonderful read and I was so excited watching the video! You so rock as a Dad.

And she looks just like you...she's beautiful.

To all of the Dad's on the blog have a beautiful and wonderful Father's Day!!!!

Rameer The Circumstance said...

Fantastic blog, DMoe. This weeks has been the most positive since I've been on the blog all this time. Loved it! And D - your daughter is adorable and a true blessing - which I'm sure you already know.

As for basketball - Brooke-Ra, I'm MORE than willing to guest-write a blog about it next week if you choose. You can see my work all over my Facebook - riding all the haters who are choking on all their hate-induced VOMIT as everything came to fruition as I called it.

As D.Murray would say - "Lakers in 7! All I do is WIN!!!"


Brooke said...

Like I said, I wanted to save the basketball talk for next week and focus on the fathers.

As for guest blogging, we'll see. I have seen your posts and I have thoughts on those as well. I'm happy for Lakers fans, but I have a bit of a gripe about the term "hater" that I've been meaning to address for a while now, not just as a result of basketball...but as a general term

I think the term is overused - maybe that'll be my blog on Monday. Rooting for your team doesn't automatically make you a "hater" of the other team. I've seen so many posts today from people who wanted the Lakers to win who called others "haters" just because they wanted the Celtics to win. I think that's silly...because one could easily call Lakers fans haters for not rooting for the Celtics. People can like who they like - there is no sin in that. So seeing all the "hater" comments the past couple of days is making my skin crawl. I think it's a bit ridiculous.

Jay said...

Brooke, please write that blog for Monday. While I thought the Lakers would win, but didn't really care WHO won, I agree...the term is overused...and usually inaccurately. Posting "Go Celtics" as your FB status doesn't mean you're a "Laker Hater." That's absurd to me. And even though Kobe is the best player in the league right now, that doesn't mean you have to cheer for him. I don't begrudge anyone for not respecting Kobe off the court, it's a personal choice. I've heard dudes tell women that they should "like" Kobe because he's a great player. I think that's crazy. You might be able to respect his game, but respecting HIM is totally different. Apples and oranges to me. If you say you don't like Kobe because he's "great" or a "winner" - then yes, you're hating. But if you say you don't respect him as a person - that's totally valid to me. Please write that blog.

Stef said...

Yes, Brooke write it! It's not just about sports. It's all around. People use that term too much. If you don't like something, you're automatically labeled a hater, and that's dumb. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion - people don't have to follow the crowd and like who everyone else likes, or what everyone else likes. I think calling someone a hater is easy and convenient to do sometimes when someone doesn't agree with you or like what you like, so I'm curious to see how you'd break it down B.

Happy Father's Day to all the daddies out there - including my own!

Rameer The Circumstance said...

In my case, the people I'm calling out are INDEED haters in my estimation. They like to backtrack now, but I remember everything they've said and/or done - and it wasn't just about rooting for their team.

Most of them weren't even Celtic fans. They just wanted the Lakers to lose cuz "they always win" or "Kobe Bryant is too good and not humble enough".

We should discuss over the phone if you're up for it. Let me know in my inbox if you'd like to chat - about this and just to kick it!

Brooke said...

Will let you know :)

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