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Challenge: My Dad Hero

My man is the world’s most average guy and that makes him an exceptional dad

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My husband, Ryan, is a firefighter and that means he’s away from home upwards of fifteen days a month. But when he’s home, Ryan is what I would consider an average six foot, two inch millennial dude who loves avoiding sunscreen, is always scouting his next meal and brews homemade beer to relax. He considers running the smoker for six hours to be a day well spent.

Ryan’s go-to outfit is a pair of bagged-out shorts that lost their elastic a decade ago. He’ll pull them up over his belly button and waddle down the hall chasing our daughters in a silly game of hide-and-seek.

Ghosting phone calls and text messages are his special talent and it may even be listed as a skill on his resume. He avoids the phone whenever possible, unless it’s an emergency.

“Look at that dad. He’s doing it right,” Ryan will say and point at a dad who is deliberately trying to embarrass his kids. You know those men who wear the tackiest Hawaiian shirt and sandals with white socks? Ryan adores those guys. In his mind, embarrassing your children is a rite of passage and he’s always trying to level up.


His dance moves are, well, smoother than a fresh jar of Skippy. In other words, he can clear a dance floor in milliseconds. Especially if the DJ plays Bruno Mars or the Spice Girls. He lip syncs and my heart flutters. He’s adorable and he’s mine.

And theirs. Our two daughters, I mean.

If I’m not available for a makeover, my daughters and husband will take turns decorating each other’s face with bright pink blush and blue eyeshadow stolen from my cosmetic bag. He once used my brown eye shadow palette to create a unibrow on our three-year-old daughter. And he always manages to fashion a bow or two in his short hair to match the ribbons in the girls’ hair.


My husband, Ryan, is my hero because he will do anything to make me smile (like shaking it to Uptown Funk). He makes the hard parts of being a parent easier for me. He fully supports my career, does his share of chores, and never hesitates to put our family first. He’s my partner and my best friend. He’s a hero and not just because he makes me laugh whenever he tries to embarrass our girls. When I say he’s average I mean he’s reliable, trustworthy, caring, smart and knows how to give a great hug. I guess that’s not so average, after all.

One last thing: There’s an unspoken rule at Ryan’s fire station that any employee who makes it into the news has to buy ice cream for the entire department. So, does this count?

Happy Father’s Day, Ryan (and all of the other average guys who are fabulous fathers)!

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