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Rules for Dads of Daughters

1. Love her mom. Treat her mother with respect, honor, and a big heaping spoonful of public displays of affection. When she grows up, the odds are good she’ll fall in love with and marry someone who treats her much like you treated her mother. Good or bad, that’s just the way it is. I’d prefer good.


2. Always be there. Quality time doesn’t happen without quantity time. Hang out together for no other reason than just to be in each other’s presence. Be genuinely interested in the things that interest her. She needs her dad to be involved in her life at every stage. Don’t just sit idly by while she add years to her… add life to her years.


3. Save the day. She’ll grow up looking for a hero. It might as well be you. She’ll need you to come through for her over and over again throughout her life. Rise to the occasion. Red cape and blue tights optional.


4. Savor every moment you have together. Today she’s crawling around the house in diapers, tomorrow you’re handing her the keys to the car, and before you know it, you’re walking her down the aisle. Some day soon, hanging out with her old man won’t be the bees knees anymore. Life happens pretty fast. You better cherish it while you can.


5. Pray for her. Regularly. Passionately. Continually.


6. Buy her a glove and teach her to throw a baseball. Make her proud to throw like a girl… a girl with a wicked slider.


7. She will fight with her mother. Choose sides wisely.


8. Go ahead. Buy her those pearls.


9. Of course you look silly playing peek-a-boo. You should play anyway.


10. Enjoy the wonder of bath time.


11. There will come a day when she asks for a puppy. Don’t over think it. At least one time in her life, just say, “Yes.”


12. It’s never too early to start teaching her about money. She will still probably suck you dry as a teenager… and on her wedding day.


13. Make pancakes in the shape of her age for breakfast on her birthday. In a pinch, donuts with pink sprinkles and a candle will suffice.


14. Buy her a pair of Chucks as soon as she starts walking. She won’t always want to wear matching shoes with her old man.



Photo Credit :: Danielle Rocke Toews

15. Dance with her. Start when she’s a little girl or even when she’s a baby. Don’t wait ‘til her wedding day.


16. Take her fishing. She will probably squirm more than the worm on your hook. That’s OK.


17. Learn to say no. She may pitch a fit today, but someday you’ll both be glad you stuck to your guns.


18. Tell her she’s beautiful. Say it over and over again. Someday an animated movie or “beauty” magazine will try to convince her otherwise.


19. Teach her to change a flat. A tire without air need not be a major panic inducing event in her life. She’ll still call you crying the first time it happens.


20. Take her camping. Immerse her in the great outdoors. Watch her eyes fill with wonder the first time she sees the beauty of wide open spaces. Leave the iPod at home.


21. Let her hold the wheel. She will always remember when daddy let her drive.


22. She’s as smart as any boy. Make sure she knows that.


23. When she learns to give kisses, she will want to plant them all over your face. Encourage this practice.


24. Knowing how to eat sunflower seeds correctly will not help her get into a good college. Teach her anyway.


25. Letting her ride on your shoulders is pure magic. Do it now while you have a strong back and she’s still tiny.


26. It is in her nature to make music. It’s up to you to introduce her to the joy of socks on a wooden floor.


27. If there’s a splash park near your home, take her there often. She will be drawn to the water like a duck to a puddle.


28. She will eagerly await your return home from work in the evenings. Don’t be late.


29. If her mom enrolls her in swim lessons, make sure you get in the pool too. Don’t be intimidated if there are no other dads there. It’s their loss.


30. Never miss her birthday. In ten years she won’t remember the present you gave her. She will remember if you weren’t there.


31. Teach her to roller skate. Watch her confidence soar.


32. Let her roll around in the grass. It’s good for her soul. It’s not bad for yours either.


33. Take her swimsuit shopping. Don’t be afraid to veto some of her choices, but resist the urge to buy her full-body beach pajamas.


34. Somewhere between the time she turns three and her sixth birthday, the odds are good that she will ask you to marry her. Let her down gently.


35. She’ll probably want to crawl in bed with you after a nightmare. This is a good thing.


36. Few things in life are more comforting to a crying little girl than her father’s hand. Never forget this.


37. Introduce her to the swings at your local park. She’ll squeal for you to push her higher and faster. Her definition of “higher and faster” is probably not the same as yours. Keep that in mind.


38. When she’s a bit older, your definition of higher and faster will be a lot closer to hers. When that day comes, go ahead… give it all you’ve got.


39. Holding her upside down by the legs while she giggles and screams uncontrollably is great for your biceps. WARNING: She has no concept of muscle fatigue.


40. She might ask you to buy her a pony on her birthday. Unless you live on a farm, do not buy her a pony on her birthday. It’s OK to rent one though.


41. Take it easy on the presents for her birthday and Christmas. Instead, give her the gift of experiences you can share together.


42. Let her know she can always come home. No matter what.


43. Remember, just like a butterfly, she too will spread her wings and fly some day. Enjoy her caterpillar years.


44. Write her a handwritten letter every year on her birthday. Give them to her when she goes off to college, becomes a mother herself, or when you think she needs them most.


45. Learn to trust her. Gradually give her more freedom as she gets older. She will rise to the expectations you set for her.


46. When in doubt, trust your heart. She already does.


47. When your teenage daughter is upset, learning when to engage and when to back off will add years to YOUR life. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.


48. Ice cream covers over a multitude of sins. Know her favorite flavor.


49. This day is coming soon. There’s nothing you can do to be ready for it. The sooner you accept this fact, the easier it will be.


50. Today she’s walking down the driveway to get on the school bus. Tomorrow she’s going off to college. Don’t blink.

~Michael Mitchell


10 Comments

I’m TIRED. THINK.

I’m tired of being told what to do. Tired of being told what and how to think. Tired of being told what to study, what career to follow and how to follow it. Tired of being told which jobs to apply for. Tired of being told that I need to get a job. Tired of being told what to believe, which god to worship, which religion to follow. Tired of being told who to vote for, and who to support.

I’m tired of being told who to love, and how to love, and when to love. Tired of being told to be more serious. Tired of being told to be less serious. Tired of being told to grow up. Tired of being told that I need to grow up. Tired of being told that I’ve grown up too fast.

Tired of being told that I should care less about money. Tired of being told that I should care more about money. Tired of being told what to eat and drink to keep me healthy. Even more tired when the list of these healthy foods and drinks keeps changing from week to week based on research done by some people I don’t know in a place I don’t know to help my health, the health of a person they neither know nor know about.

I’m tired of being told that Jay Z and almost anyone else who’s rich and famous is a devil worshipper, free mason or illuminatti. If you are jealous of all the money and success they have, that is your problem. Not mine. And if you don’t know how to achieve success for yourself, hiyo ni shauri yako. One tip: if you took all the time you spend reading and posting conspiracy theories on the internet and instead do something useful like real reading, or actually working, it would help you. Do something for your trivia filled baby brain, for once.

"Look, they are worshipping him! And he's holding up a devilish sign!" Get away from me, your stupidity might be contagious.

Tired of being told not to listen to Camp Mulla’s music; people claiming that it’s bubblegum music and that since they come from well to do backgrounds, we shouldn’t listen to them. What if I like bubblegum music? What if I like bubblegum? And so what if they are well to do? Your ‘nimetoka mbali’ hustler from the corner story is old. it’s so 2000 and late. (2008, get it?) Hehe.

Yeah the party don't stop and we're fresh all day every day. Screw the haters.

Tired of living in a country where many of us seem to believe we have no control over our destinies. Where mediocrity is expected, embraced and celebrated. Tired of living in a society where deep down we know what’s wrong and what’s right yet we continue to support the wrong, both in our personal lives and in our choice of political leadership. Tired of having leaders who are on the wrong side of history, and are consistently inconsistent. Tired of having leaders who are elitist, tribal, self-seeking and are still audacious enough to keep forcing their bullshit on the populace.

I’m tired of the fact that we are so dependent on foreign help. Tired of the fact that we have doctors, scientists, and engineers, yet we can’t cure our diseases, make new inventions, or manufacture our own cars, planes and computers.

Tired of church leaders who don’t stand up against the wrong in society and government. Tired of civil society groups who don’t stand up to fight against the moral decay of this nation, yet would easily fight for gay rights. Tired of these church leaders and civil society leaders who have turned a blind eye to the blatant tribalism perpetrated by Mwai Kibaki’s government. Thinking that these things don’t matter. Thinking that we are not connected, and what affects my brother will not affect me.

I’m tired of the condescension of the elite. Tired of their short sightedness; not realizing that it would serve their interests better if the suffering of the masses was alleviated, even if only slightly. Tired of some people thinking that they are more equal than others, and that for some strange reason it is their birthright to own and rule this country.

I’m tired of the apathy of the middle class. Tired of their satisfaction with their jobs, cars, hobbies and yuppy lives. Tired of their thinking that as long as they can make do with what they have, what happens to the rest of the masses, the hoi polloi, the genocide class, the I-live-on-less-than-a-dollar-a-day people, will not affect them. Tired of the fact that they think it’s prudent to participate less in the affairs of the nation. Not realizing that as a country our destinies are so intertwined and what benefits our brothers at the bottom ultimately benefits us all. Even more tired of people who, after being disappointed with the political process, now declare they will never vote. Get behind me, you mental midget.

Tired of mass media that has refused to mature. Tired of reporters who claim that they are journalists. Tired of newspapers, tv, and radio that floods our lives with politics and negativity. Yet there is so much positivity and success to celebrate and highlight in this country. Tired of the media not realising the power they have to bring about positive change in society. Tired of the fluff, the bullshit reject cheap soap operas that they stream into our living rooms at almost every hour of the day.

Tired of the adult programs and music videos that are played at any time of the day, negatively affecting the children of our nation and giving them a despicable example to follow.

Tired of all of the sex talk on radio. They say sex sells, but the truth is that it is the easiest thing to sell. So the ones dependent on this topic show nothing but lazy minds that refuse to innovate and be creative and bring some freshness to radio. I’m tired, and pissed off, about lewd and abrasive morning radio shows all talking about sex, cheating, broken marriages and the rest. Tired of the Kenyans who actually call in to such shows.

Screw you Maina Kageni, and the rest that are like you. You are so narrow minded that if you wore earrings they would bang against each other when you walk. I would ask you to go back home but I’m not sure if the door to the cage is still open. If I called you an idiot it would be an insult to idiots worldwide.

Caroline Mutoko, with all due respect, the next time I hear you speak in that fake- ass-wanna-be-faux-bourgeois-nouveau-riche-inferiority-complex accent, telling us how to live our lives and telling our women how to live theirs, I honestly believe I shall throw up in my mouth.

Alfred Mutua. I don’t know what to tell you. But someone said it quite well before: ” As for that clown known as the government spokesman, he would be better off feeding bananas to monkeys in the zoo.” The only problem I have with statement is that I don’t think that even monkeys should be subjected to the torture of enduring your bullshit.

"Bananas, anyone? Anyone?"

I’m tired that as a nation and society we can’t see and realize all these things. God gave you a brain for a reason. Use it. Think for yourself or others will think for you, and bend your lives to their will.

Think.

~Phillip Walubengo.

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