I awoke from an troublesome dream this morning with a tune in my head and the words, “Somebody’s paper daddy.”  The visual in the dream was as follows:  There were two babies lying on their backs with only diapers on.  On each of their stomachs was stuck a picture about two inches square with a child-like drawing of a man, with the notation “Somebody’s paper daddy.”

I hurt for every little lad who only has a paper dad.  A name was left in his family tree, but no man to hold him on his knee. No father’s lessons on catching bugs, or snakes, or spiders, or slimy slugs.  And paper daddies can’t give bear hugs.

What a loss to each little girl, with no father to watch her twirl.  No dad to call her his “little princess,” nor to applaud her every success.  No father to give her sage advice; nor excitedly say “Great, you did it twice!”  No man to teach her how to know, the time for caution and going slow.  No model to show her who to date, and warn against a deceitful mate.

Are you the man who fathered this child?  Did you leave your name on paper, and drift off into the wild?  Leaving a little somebody who never had, a real life father – no, just a paper dad.




About oneta hayes

ABOUT ME Hello. To various folks I am Neat’nee, Mom, Grandma Neta, Gramma, Aunt Neta, Aunt Noni, Aunt Neno, and Aunt Neto (lots of varieties from little nieces and nephews). To some I’m more like “Didn’t you used to be my teacher?” or “Don’t I know you from someplace?” To you, perhaps, I am a Fellow Blogger. Not “fellow” like a male or a guy, but “fellow” like a companion or an adventurer. I would choose to be Grandma Blogger, and have you pull up a chair, my website before you, while I tell you of some days of yore. I have experienced life much differently than most of you. It was and is a good life. I hope to share nuggets of appreciation for those who have gone before me and those who come after me. By necessity you are among those who come after me and I will tell you of those who came before. Once upon a time in a little house on a prairie - oops, change that lest I commit plagiarism - and change that “house on the prairie” to “dugout on the prairie.” So my story begins...
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  1. Beautiful in such a sad way. So sorry for those who only have a paper dad. Makes me so grateful for my dad who is 84 and still tells me he is proud of me.

    • oneta hayes says:

      That is a true blessing. My daddy didn’t talk much, but he was great with the shoulder hugs, and I never doubted that I was his pleasure. However, he had a heart attack and died at 63 very unexpectedly. I had a daddy who taught me how to live and a mother who taught me how to die – at least I hope that will be true. Daddy was always mellow; if he had “moods” he didn’t show them to us. Mother’s patient endurance and thoughtfulness to all of us during her “cancer” months showed a side of her I did not know before.

  2. dawnlizjones says:

    Wow, what a great post, really poignant and very timely for so many. If they can only find that God is “Father to the fatherless”!

    • oneta hayes says:

      Thank you. Yes, we are doubly blessed to have great earthly fathers and our Heavenly Father. Sadly many who have had no earthly Father are hesitant to trust the Heavenly Father. Sad.

  3. luckyjc007 says:

    Great job on this. I never thought about the term paper dad, but it fits well. Sad, but there are a lot of paper dads in this world.

    • oneta hayes says:

      lucky, I had never heard “paper daddy” either. I don’t know why it was in my dream. I just felt like it was given by the Lord and I had to do something with it; thus, the blog I hope it will “take” in a way that might touch some man’s, or mens’, hearts. Thanks. I would be glad for others to use that expression perhaps to bring awareness to how descriptive and irresponsible dead beat dads are. I’m sure there are some who would care.

  4. Faye says:

    Paper dad is a new term to me but the written expression is poignant. Makes me ever grateful for my dad. He worked hard and was seen as a ‘rough’ diamond but like a lot of big men truly had a gentle heart despite graphic war experiences. As Dawn has written above may all who now lack a father or still only have a paper father truly come to find that God can indeed become and fill the need He is the Father to the fatherless indeed. Thank you for this blog.

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