In honor of Father's Day 2021, Ricky the Meadmaker reflects on all things dad.
This year, I got to become a father all over again with the arrival of Erik, and I didn’t realize how amazing it would be.
A lot of people think of being a father as something you either are or are not. You either have a kid or you don’t. But being a father isn’t a fact, it’s an active commitment and comes in more forms than I can possibly name.
I am at least two dads now: Nora’s and Erik’s. They need different things from me, and I love them each in their own way. The more I commit to loving each of them, the more of a father I become.
Then there are the people who have been a dad, a granddaddy, a big brother, or any of the myriad terms of endearment and affection that we bestow on those men in our lives who support us, love us, and worry about us whether they’re blood relatives or not.
For me, today is not only a day to recommit to my own family, but to hold up those men who love and care for the generations to come, no matter what they’re called or what their technical title “should” be.
I am deeply inspired by the men who have come before me in my own family and the many friends I have known throughout my life who have recently taken the title of “Daddy.” It might seem strange to write about parenting on a mead website, but if I’m remembered for one thing, I hope it’s not my position on the clarity of mead, but how I loved and served my family and tried to model that love and compassion throughout Groennfell Meadery.
I have certainly fallen short of my own standards at times. I have raised my voice when I needn’t have. I have been distracted when I should have been listening. I have tried to get out of reading Curious George Goes to the Hospital for the ninety-fifth time. And the list goes on and on. But my community has helped me commit again and again to be the father I want to be by guiding me and supporting me with love and compassion.
No man is an island, and on this of all days, the truth of those words is driven home to me. Today is a day to thank the men in our lives who have made us who we are. Today is also a day to thank the communities that support them in raising the next generation.
Happy Father’s Day, everyone!
- Ricky the Meadmaker