Tuesday, February 9

Lesson #67 - It Is Good To Be The Dad

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Welcome to "Transient Tuesdays"...I am glad that you decided to stop by! Have a seat, kick up your feet and enjoy this week's post from The Technical Parent. Joshua was my very first male follower (YAY!) and he always leaves some of the best comments! Recently, a friend of Joshua's lost their little angel to cancer. No parent should ever have to go through that kind of pain and no child should ever have to fight such a terrible disease. I hope his guest post today will show everyone that they should slow down and enjoy life a little bit more!

Originally this was going to be a list of sorts -- probably along the lines of my regularly scheduled Tuesday bit -- called "The Things We Lost As We Grew Older" which then morphed into "Things This Father Once Lost, But Has Found Again." Both of those ideas centered around things that I enjoyed as a child that were lost to me for a time, but made an appearance once I had kids, and really once The Girl (now 2.5 going on 13) was able to understand it. Basically these were things like Candyland and the simple act of coloring with crayons, or "Where the Sidewalk Ends" by Shel Silverstein, old school Disney movies, and jumping into a pile of leaves. The never-ending joy associated with a game of tag from our kitchen to her bedroom and back again ad nauseum. These are things I enjoyed as a kid and never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that they would be so fun for me again, because I get to teach the joy of them to these two little beings.

So, what this started out being is not what I'm supplying today. In fact, I've had a few months to get this together and it's only now, a week before it's going up, that I'm finally doing more with it than the few notes I typed in all that time ago.

I make no secrets of the fact that I love being a parent. I also don't hide the fact that 10 years ago I was 19, getting ready to finish off my sophomore year in undergrad, single, and a whole host of other things. If my current self had appeared to my then self and told me that before I was 30 I would be married for eight years with two kids, a mortgage, daycare that cost more than the mortgage, and everything else I have going on right now, well it may be cliché, but I would have laughed in his face. And maybe offered him something to drink. Some people, I'm sure, imagine these things when they're 19 or even younger. Believe me, it was the furthest thing from my mind up until the moment I met her in the summer of 2000.

And so we arrive at today.

I remember with fond memories those things that once dominated my existence as a child and take great joy myself in doing them once again. It's not just the reminiscent quality of these things; it goes beyond that. It's that dad is the best jungle gym in the world because he's strong and can lift you and can flip you and can catch you. The bliss in the simplicity of repetition; of rolling or kicking a ball back and forth, back and forth.

These are new feelings. The overwhelming sense of je ne sais quoi...I can't describe the feeling, but it's real, and it's there; a thing in your brain and a physical pang to your heart when you look at your child and they look back at you. It's that look in their eyes when they see you again, and you know that you are the bulk of their entire existence; that to this little person you can do no wrong; that you are their world. It's real and I feel it. Every time that child walks up to me, hugs around the legs and says, without prompting or in response to my saying it first, "I love you soooo much."

It's pride, to be sure. It's love in its purest and most basic form. I hear this and I know, unequivocally and without hesitation, that it's good to be the dad.


Holly said...

What an absolutely beautiful post. I have chills. My kids were both just driving me nuts as I put them to bed....but oh how lucky I am to be able to put them to bed...to be able to go in there and kiss them while they sleep and then give hugs in the morning and begin the whole routine over and over again. As for the Dad aspect, it used to frustrate me as my hubby comes hoem aroudn bed time and the kids get all riled up, but I have realized this is a special time for them...they hide, he finds them and then the two year old yells "Let's go jump on Daddy!" I would miss it if this did not happen.
Wonderful Post!

Kat @ www.TodaysCliche.com said...

Just loved this post... coming from SITS. Random, but are you going to Bloggy Boot Camp in Baltimore?

Vodka Logic said...

Great post Joshua, the loss of a child is a terrible thing and when I hear these stories they make me more grateful of my kids health. Regardless being a parent is a wonderful gift and even during the trying times I try to remember.


Joshua said...

@Holly - I have the great pleasure of doing the daycare pick-up duty which is so much better than dropping off; I'm really glad I don't have to do that. They'd come to work with me. This duty gives me about three hours to rile the kids up, feed them, and have them peaked just as soon as The Wife gets home. Which is perfect because then they just ride the roller coaster of energy down, down, down until they crash into bed. Sublime. It works for us.

@Kat - Thank you. And no, I'm not attending, but something tells me you were asking the proprietress of this fine establishment and not me.

@Vodka Logic - It was a beautiful service Saturday. There were probably 300 people there. No joke. Both my kids were preemies (6.5 weeks for The Girl, 8 weeks for The Boy), and The Boy had a very rough go of it (i.e. sepsis, collapsed lung, chest tube, ventilator; and that in the first five days in the NICU). It makes it hard to discipline them when I think of Aubrey and just want to enjoy whatever the get up to, for good or ill.

wines constantly said...

Aaaand, you just made this pregnant lady cry. Great post.

Joshua said...

@wines constantly - No, no, no. Don't cry. Come over to my place and read about chocolate today.

Shell said...

How very sweet!

Joshua said...

@Shell - Oh...it's nothing. *blushes*

Amy said...

Great post. It is nice to meet new friends out there..

Andrea said...

What a great post! Have a great day.

Joshua said...

@Amy - I've seen the heart-shaped sandwiches before; I can't wait until The Girl can truly appreciate the effort. I also need to know where you got the Disney plate in that picture. I needs it.

@Andrea - Thank you. And a great day to you, too.

Hissyfits & Halos said...

There's something beautiful about a man capable of love and devotion in such depths. Not many men can describe in words the things they feel as a husband, or father. It seems to make the earth stand still for a moment when I hear/read things like this.

What a great smile it's left me with, today. :)

Joshua said...

@Hissyfits & Halos - I blush again. Thank you for that. And I'm glad I made you smile; actually, I'm just happy I didn't make someone else cry.

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

What a beautiful post... I'd completely forgotten about Shel Silverstein... now I'm going to have to go find "Where The Sidewalk Ends" (I can't stop thinking about that one poem, "I cannot go to school today, said little Peggy Ann McKay") so I can hand a copy down to G!

Confessions From A Working Mom

Joshua said...

@Confessions - My favorite was always:

"Oh the thumb-sucker's thumb
May look dirty and wet
And withered, and white as the snow,
But the taste of a thumb
Is the sweetest taste yet
(As only we thumb-sucker's know)."

Anonymous said...

this was incredibly lovely...and so wonderful to hear a male perspective. on my way to visit your blog!

Ashley @ KiwisandCocktails said...

Aw, I loved it!
Thanks for sharing! I want to be a parent and have that feeling! :)

TDM Wendy said...

Christmas story photo is absolutely classic. Looks like she is having a ball. Or something like that.

Daffy said...

Josh is such a great writer and his love for his children shines SO brightly. I doubt anyone could or would ever question just how much he loves being a father!

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