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Early Moments Matter: Fatherhood as a Mission or a Superdad of a Special Child
I was born to be a father!
When we are born, our parents wish us health, happiness and of course they want us to find our own place in the society when we grow up. When I was growing up, I dreamt of being helpful to my society.
I didn’t dream of being an astronaut, or a lawyer or an engineer. I didn’t know what I want to choose. I thought I was the only one with this problem. But my parents wanted me to become an engineer and I took their advice. Though I felt that my soul was longing for something else.
A few years later I got married and became a father. I realized I was a big fan of fatherhood. I wasn’t scared to hold a newborn for the first time. I didn’t know where it was coming from, but I learned taking care of the baby very quickly. Later, when my son was diagnosed with severe autism, we had hard times. It was then when my extreme love for fatherhood came handy. I was ok staying with my son at hospitals. Or walking with him. I felt like a child myself, and we played a lot. But the reason I am writing this story is to share how I understood that my mission and profession is to be a dad. It may sound banal, but I am a fan of my kids. What is interesting is that the uniqueness of my child brought me into the world of special children and I found out that there is a real profession that teaches to help and love children as they are. It is the profession of defectologist or a special pedagogue.
I understood that I could help others as well, and share my love with more children.
At some point I thought I was meant to be a father of a special child and if I had a regular child I wouldn’t know what I am missing. My son gave me a unique experience.
But with the birth of my other children, who didn’t have development problems, I felt all the joys of the first words, hugs and the most important phrase: ' I love you, dad', that I didn’t hear from my first son.
I think that masculinity and power of fathers is in their gentleness and care to their children. Mothers are like saints, and they often give more to the child. But it is us – dads – who teach children to live in the society, to be strong and most importantly to grant them a father’s love.
I love being with children, jumping and running with them, having an ice-cream in secret from mom and feeling free.
Unfortunately, we also have to work a lot to support the family. But I think sparing some time for a child every day is sacred. As well as remembering that a father’s love and understanding are very important for our children.
That is why I always say that my duty and profession is a father.
Author: Farkhad Artikbaev