He does exist — and he is not an anomaly.
The black dad that you don't think exists falls asleep with his son on his chest after rocking him for what felt like forever. His wife transfers the baby from his arms to the crib and coaxes him to bed, where he only sleeps for three or four hours.
He spent most of his wife's pregnancy talking about legacy and is determined to create one. So he rises at 3:30 in the morning to take photographs of the city at its emptiest. He has to be to work at seven and knows he won't have the energy to chase his dreams after a dehumanizing 12-hour shift.
The black dad that you don't think exists hasn't taken a shower alone in a week. Lately he's been combining the baby's bath time and his own shower to maximize the ever evaporating resource of free time. After, he likes to dress his son in color palettes to match his own.
The black dad you don't think exists wants to give his son everything, even the things he doesn't have yet. He wants to learn how to fish so he can teach his son how to fish. He wants to take him camping. He says things like, "We need to look up activities to stimulate the baby's sensory development." His wife is content to let their son bang his toys together.
The black dad that you don't think exists fights with his wife about who gets to comfort the baby when he cries. He's designated Sundays as family day. He slow cooks sausages and peppers. He refuses to miss his son's doctor's appointments, the same way he refused to miss his wife's prenatal appointments. He dreams up family field trips. Plans to show his son the world.
The black dad that you don't think exists sneaks his son a taste of whipped cream. He says he can't believe a day will come when his son won't give him unlimited cuddles. He lets his son use his dreadlocks as handlebars to pull himself into a standing position. He wishes he could make a room entirely out of pillows so his baby never fell down on anything hard.
The black dad that you don't think exists is nurturing. He is soft. He is kind. Gentle. Thoughtful. Hardworking. Dedicated. Creative. Sleep-deprived. Caring. Devoted. Well-informed. Present. Supportive. Dynamic. Loving. Important.
The black dad that you don't think exists ... does.
This article was originally published at The Huffington Post. Reprinted with permission from the author.