Happy Father's Day to Our Hero: Lorenzo Thompson!
Before Lorenzo and I married, we had discussions around combining our two families and our expectations surrounding parenting. Lorenzo had a teenage daughter from a previous relationship and I had a six year old and a toddler, also from a previous relationship.
Having witnessed the “hands off” relationship between Jazmyn and her biological father, my mother also had her reservations and concerns about how Lorenzo would parent the girls. She wanted to make sure that my next mate would treat me and her granddaughters right. In her words, she wanted Jazmyn to finally experience being ‘a daddy’s girl’.
Ultimately, we decided that together we would raise our daughters in a Christian home, preparing them to become virtuous women. Lorenzo’s daughter would become my daughter and my daughters would become Lorenzo’s. We would raise each of our girls as though they were our biological children.
Once we married, due to the physical distance between us and her age, my “parenting” of Denae was somewhat limited. Often times she would call me for motherly advice and to get my opinion on a range of topics. When she came for her regular visits, I would finally get the opportunity to love on her in person. I loved it. I was always happy to see her come and was equally sad when it was time for her to leave us. Although she is in college now and has “left the nest”, so to speak, she is my oldest daughter. My face lights up whenever I talk about her.
On the flip side, because I have full custody of Jazmyn and Kayla, Lorenzo’s interaction with them is on a daily basis. For most men, it is a huge responsibility to raise another man’s child fulltime. In fact, I have come in contact with men, both biological fathers and stepfathers, who shun their responsibilities by either running for the hills or quietly sitting back while watching the mother raise “her” children, only assisting if or when they are called upon.
In true fashion, from the day we married to now, Lorenzo has stepped up to the plate! True to his word he has treated our three daughters equally. They are all his daughters and he is their Daddy.
When they are not feeling well, it isn’t to me that the girls run. It is to Lorenzo. He uses his expertise to comfort and soothe them. He is also usually the one that coordinates their day care when they are out of school. It is Lorenzo who fixes their lunches. It is Lorenzo who helps Jazmyn with her homework, making sure she understands and completes it. Lorenzo makes sure he spends quality time with both girls, making sure they are taken care of. Likewise, Lorenzo is also involved in correcting and disciplining the girls. The list goes on and on of all the ways he is involved in our daughters’ lives.
Most people who don’t know our history automatically assume that Jazmyn and Kayla are Lorenzo’s biological children. He is just that in tuned with them.
To give you an example of just how involved he is, there was one occasion when Lorenzo went out of town for a few days on a business trip. Once Jazmyn realized that he would be gone, her first question was, “Who is going to take care of us?” The “us” was not only her and her sister, but included me as well. All I could do was laugh. Yet, her question was a confirmation of answered prayers and a true testament of just how blessed we all are to have Lorenzo Thompson in our lives.
To quote my Grandmother, “Lorenzo takes care of his girls...”
Raising someone else’s child means that not only do they not have your DNA or genes; it means that they may also exhibit traits and behaviors that are foreign to you and your spouse. It can be challenging. However, Lorenzo has told me that in spite of these challenges, he knows that he can’t sit back idly because he has been given an assignment – directly from God – to train, teach and guide our family, and as such, he will never slack on his job just because it would be, seemingly, “easier” to sit back in the wings. Knowing that I am not alone in raising our daughters makes my heart warm. Knowing that I have a participating partner is comforting.
“The Lord has blessed me because of you”
Genesis 30:27 TLB
This Father’s Day, I would like to salute and celebrate my children’s FATHER, Lorenzo Thompson!
I also dedicate this WHOAment to all of the men who are raising children who are not biologically yours!
God sees our diligence and will reward you for your efforts.
Happy Father's Day!!!
|Daddy and Denae|
|Daddy and Jazmyn|
|Daddy and Kayla|