Dear Americans,

This letter is to all of you. Perhaps it may not seem like it is, but… it is.

With the annual celebration of our great nation just around the corner, I wanted to take a moment and thank you for a few things.

I am not writing this in some cheesy way. I really mean it. Thank you. You know who you are.

Thank you for protecting this country. Thank you for putting your life on the line, and maybe even more frequently, your relationships, your family, your parenthood, and your time. There is great evil in this world, and I owe you a debt of gratitude for letting me sit all cozy and rich (let’s be honest, most of us are rich compared to the rest of the world), pretending like the whole world isn’t full of chaos and danger and nightmarish things.

Thank you for devoting your lives to careers that will never pay you well, but will benefit, and bend, and mold, and shape my child as he learns what it means to be a grown up. Thank you for giving up what could be a less frugal future so that you can teach my child things that I possibly can’t or probably won’t. Thank you for the hours of dedication you put in before and after my child is with you every day.

Thank you for putting yourself in potential harm’s way each day to keep my neighborhood safe, and to be available should my house burn down or my car roll over. Thank you for doing mundane tasks such as writing speeding tickets and showing up to court so that funding exists to keep your jobs that keep me, and my child, much safer as we go about our lives.

Thank you for devoting your life to science and to the study of healing so that there is hope and more cures to go along with those sicknesses that we can’t handle on our own. Thank you for using your mind to better our chances for a healthy future even as we seemingly work so hard to destroy our bodies on a daily basis.

Thank you for dedicating the time and stamina to get more education than almost anyone else in the world so that I can have someone to take my son to when there is something so wrong that Daddy can’t fix it. Thank you for being responsible, and safe, and pushing past all of the sue-happy people who are just hoping you’ll make a mistake. Thank you for sticking with it so that I, and my son, can be well.

Thank you for learning to leap, and jump, and dance. Thank you for strengthening your bodies. Thank you for increasing your agility. Thank you for your dedication to health and fitness. Thank you for giving us beautiful things to watch. Powerful things to watch. Incredible things to watch. Thank you for giving us an example of what the human body can do. Thank you for competing so that we have something to root for. Thank you for entertaining us when our minds could use the break.

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Dan Pearce is an American-born author, app developer, photographer, and artist. This blog, Single Dad Laughing, is what he's most known for, with more than 2 million daily subscribers as of 2017. Pearce writes mostly humorous and introspective works, as well as his musings which span from fatherhood, to dating, to life, to the people and dynamics of society. Single Dad Laughing is much more than a blog. It's an incredible community of people just being real and awesome together!