“Fathers be good to your daughters…” I have always loved this song and grateful I had a father who was good to me. As the story of grief goes, some Father’s Days are better than others, and today is not one of the best. But even with that aching feeling I still haven’t become accustomed to, my heart is full. Today, I’m choosing to celebrate fathers who are not only good to their daughters but good to their sons too! I feel blessed to know young black men who are involved parents. While some had amazing examples and others did not, they embrace the role they play in their children’s lives and I’m thankful their children will know a father’s love just as I did.

When asked “what’s something you feel you understand about your father since becoming a father,” this is what they told me:

“His sense of unconditional love. It’s not every day that you’ll be willing to clean a person’s butt for them or be ok with them puking on you. Even when she upsets me I still love her nonetheless.” – Rashod

“I understand communication is important between kids and parents. My father is the only parent I speak to and out of his 6 children I’m the only one he hears from but that’s because we have great communication.” – Brandon

“I understand why he was pretty strict but also why he always made sure I knew he was my best friend. I’m also pretty strict with Deuce but I want him to know that immediately after, I’m his best friend. That way he knows that me being strict is me looking out for his best interest and that he can come to me for any and everything.” – Jahi

“I think now I understand better why my father really emphasized on two things as a parent. One was creating memories. He used to try his best to create memorable moments with us. Whether it was fishing or spontaneous bowling excursions, I realize now how important those days really are because you understand that your baby won’t be a baby forever and that those memories last a lifetime. The other thing I understand more as a father myself, is that it is important to develop a culture of standard when it comes to your children. I didn’t understand why he would fight so hard to help us live up to the standards that he raised us to have. Things such as being honest, even if you did wrong, or taking care of your family even if it’s a burden. Those things are what I hold on to til today and they have shaped me into being the man I am.” – Vaughn

I understand the power of my words. I can both bless and curse. I can build up or tear down. Though my words are powerful, it is my silence that is deadly. – Raynard

Proverbs 20:7 The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.