I saw one of the sweetest videos a little over a week ago. You may have seen it, too. A dad jumped on stage to help his young ballerina daughter. Plagued with stage fright, she was in a tough spot. Dad realized that and came to save the day. Holding a baby in his arms, he not only leaped to his daughter’s rescue, he leapt with the other ballerinas during their recital performance, too. It truly was one of the sweetest moments I’ve seen go viral.
Other dads are pretty awesome, too, including Dave, Izzy, and a lot of the dads who contribute to conversations here on Age of Autism. Knee-deep in the thick of things, I can feel the love they have for their child through their responses and shared stories. But some of the dads here won’t get the sort of international attention like that wonderful Ballerina Dad got.
Even without the accolades, the dads here step up. They do whatever it takes. They worked tirelessly – and will continue to do so – to keep their child happy, healthy, and safe. So, this Father’s Day weekend, I thought I’d tip my hat to some of the guys I’ve been inspired by here in the autism community and those beyond in other special needs circles.
As well as this determined dad:
I loved this story about a guy who saw a need and filled it:
I can’t forget about Team Hoyt. Long before my husband and I clued in to what was happening to Ronan, I was inspired by these two:
Later, when we finally connected the dots, it was this Dad, along with his wife and their organization, whogave me hope. If I’ve learned one thing along this journey called life, it’s to always hold onto hope:
To the other dads who do not have a child like mine but who have put their neck and careers on the line for families like mine anyway – Rob Schneider, Donnie Wahlberg, Andrew Wakefield, and Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. to name a few, you have my utmost respect and appreciation. In speaking up and speaking out, you have done wonders for many of us.
Finally, a heartfelt thanks to Ronan’s Dad. The guy who keeps our family together, who fills our days with fun and adventure, who works long hours and through many weekends, who would go to the ends of the earth for all of his children and for me…thank you. From the bottom of my heart today and always, thank you.
Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.