It’s a rainy day, and this dad and his son was seen walking down the sidewalk in Queens, New York. They only have one folding umbrella.
The striking thing about the photo, and the reason it resonates with a large number of people, is that that umbrella is being held by the dad over his sons head to shield his little boy from the downpour – leaving him soaking wet. It’s such a simple gesture, yet it has the power to contain in one photo the essence of the vast and deep love parents have for their children.
The photo was posted to Reddit by Eumine Choi. He recounted the day he saw the father and son to Yahoo Parenting.
“I was leaving work and it was pouring rain and I opened my umbrella and looked up and there was the dad and the son walking,” he said. “I was about to cross the street and I just wanted to take a picture to show my friends later that night. I wanted them to see what I witnessed.”
“The dad was carrying a leather briefcase and some food, and instead of worrying about himself, he gave the umbrella to his son,” he added. “Actually, his son wasn’t even holding it; the dad was holding it for him, and only certain people would think to do that.”
Everyone’s already nicknamed the man in the photo as “Umbrella Dad.” You’re awesome, Umbrella Dad.
Are you a new dad? Here's a few suggestions from Smart Parenting contributor Andrea Herrera for simple gestures you can do to show your love for your wife and new baby:
1. Rock and hold the baby. The only thing that you couldn’t do once the baby comes out is breastfeed, so take it upon yourself to learn how to do everything else that the new mom does. Rocking and holding the baby are great opportunities to bond with him. Skin-to-skin contact, also called kangaroo care, is not for mommy and baby alone –- feel free to have your skin-to-skin time with your baby as well! The new mom will definitely appreciate having empty arms even for just a few minutes when you have the baby in yours.
2. Wake up during night-time feedings. Whether your baby is formula-fed or breastfed, there is no reason why you cannot help out during night-time feedings. Depending on how you choose to feed your baby, you can prepare a bottle of formula, prepare a bottle of expressed breast milk, or just stay up to keep the new mom company as she nurses baby.
3. Give baby a bath. It's a scary task that most new dads dare not try, but this can actually be a great bonding activity for you and your baby. Make sure to prepare by watching the new mom give your baby a bath. If she can do it, you can too! And she will be more than happy to let you take over on some days.