Men, we need a pep talk. Fatherhood is not a job-it is a choice. You chose it-whether you were ready to or not. As such, be a dad. It is easy to be a father on a birth certificate, but to be a dad- now that is manhood. What do I mean by be a dad? I mean, be present, not just be there. Present means listen to your kids, relish in their dreams and goals, encourage them, guide them-BE WITH THEM (and please put down the smartphone!) Love their mom. She is their source of breath. They will learn love from how you love. Even if you have a failed relationship-show love. Remember half of your child is your partner or ex-partner . Do not keep score with your spouse. Kids are not a weekly chore list. No dad deserves a medal for giving mom a break. THEY ARE YOUR KIDS! That said, give mom a break. Motherhood just might be the toughest thing to do in this world-because for a child, mom is the world. I get you work and are tired, but weekends are not just for you. I can’t believe how many dads I know that go out drinking on a Friday and leave it all on mom. Go ahead and have a few pops with the boys, but you better get up first thing in the morning and experience the hangover with a toddler jumping on you (because there is nothing like it!)
Okay Dads, that is enough of a rant-but do yourself a favour and be a MAN.
My little girl started kindergarten this week. I wasn’t one of the parents that was crying, but on the inside I had a bit of a lump in my throat. Wow, has time flown by already.
We had the option to partake in class for the first couple of days, but my wife and I decided to just drop our daughter off. This is her time and we not only do not need to be there, we really shouldn’t be. We want our kids to be free to discover a new thing without mommy and daddy. I understand why many parents chose to stay. They wanted to ensure their child was okay. Perhaps they wanted to see what the environment was like and how the teachers were. Of course we care about all these things, but the start of school didn’t seem like the time for this. We too, will experience this, through volunteering in class throughout the year. The start of school is a big step for parents, but really it is a bigger step for the kids. It is another step towards independence. Seeing this growth is AWESOME, but it is HARD for us.
This is all part of the delicate dance of parenting-the art of holding on and letting go at the same time.
This hits you in a variety of ways. School is a big one. Going back to work after a maternity leave. Or even the time your little toddler no longer wants you to ride down the slide with them. Walking a daughter down the aisle is perhaps the most symbolic gesture of letting go, but the reality is we do it everyday a little bit. I don’t think this beautiful dichotomy will ever leave. With each new day, we ought to hang on a little less and let go a little more. My advice-embrace the growth and enjoy the new stage. Love and remember the stage that passed. You will never fully let go-they will always be your baby-even when they have babes of their own.My wonderful wife and eldest daughter 2012