Every year it never fails. Father’s day comes around and I get a few texts or Facebook tags from well-meaning friends who want to wish me a Happy Father’s Day. The first time it happened I was really confused. I’m a single mother yes (for a few more days at least). I have put on a lot of hats, yes. But I have no intention to try, nor will I ever be able to fill the role of father for my son. God did not equip me that way.

I used to get down on the floor, roar and wrestle with my son when he was younger. He had so much energy and that was my way of toughening him up and using up some of that energy. I can teach him how to fix a tie, take him fishing (ok, maybe not that cause I’m a city girl), or tell him about girls. But I could never replace the bond that happens between a father and his son. I can’t teach him what it’s like to think like a man (even though Steve Harvey tells me to try and do so). And definitely not how to become one.

I can guide him in how to find the right mate, but I have no idea about leading a family as a man. I only know how to do the best I can in providing and leading as a single mom, and showing him an example of a godly woman.

Every year the messages came and I would just say thank you because I knew these friends were really meaning to compliment and encourage me in a loving way. They had no idea that it stings a little to be reminded that my son’s father is not consistently there and that I have to try my best to compensate.

I want to take this opportunity to thank every man who is a father to their children. Those who are there every moment they can be and loving every bit of it. You get how important your presence is even when you don’t say a word. Thank you for recognizing how much we need you, and for being that support.

Special shout out to my dad. You were such an awesome example of a husband and father to us growing up and you still are. I can’t wait for our father daughter dance coming up soon! And another one to my husband-to-be for choosing not just me, but my son who has now become our son. You came at a time when he really needed a father figure and you’ve done a great job stepping right in to fill the gap.

I want to also encourage those men who want to be fathers to their children but are held back for whatever reason. Keep fighting for them and never give up. They need you.

Fathers everywhere, we honor you this Father’s Day and every day!