I should start keeping a tally of all the times I’ve heard, “really?!?!,” and “awesome!,” from my wife as I had that unmistakable look on my face. That’s the one that any woman married with kids sees on their husband as he realizes that really wasn’t a good idea for the kids. It’s those moments the Moms realize why God brought them into marriage and parenthood…and Dads realize they can never be the mom :-)!
I reflected back on this last year of being a father and concluded I will never get the “Father of the Year” award. Two more recent incidents would surely exclude me from the competition. The funny thing is they both involved my daughter, which I admit now…I’m no where near equipped to raise. The years of dating that wait ahead make me want to start the “Billings” parenting method….when it comes time for dating we move to a farm in Billings, Montana.
So, the first disqualifier for this prestigious award would have to be the naked driveway incident. I was with the kids home..alone…with no Mom supervision (quick disclaimer). I had managed to keep them all together. No broken bones (that’s a whole other blog and original disqualifier)…no hospital visits…kids were fed…watered…and even popsicled…life was good. I meet Wendy in the driveway as she is pulling up, as she was surely wondering how I fared all day with the kids. We both turn around to see our naked, almost 3 year old, daughter running out into the driveway. The shocked look on our faces stopped Sydney in her tracks…to which she screams out, “I go pee-pee on the grass Mama!” Queue the Dad look, and the Mom phrase, “Really!?!?”
The second incident wasn’t at the level of the first one…nonetheless, it did garner another “really!?!,” from Mom. The Father/Daughter lesson learned yesterday was a real simple one. No matter how hard I try to convince Sydney, she will never take a plastic tea cup or a nerf bullet in place of a baby bottle. She won’t make the connection, and she won’t even attempt to use it on her baby doll…And she will definitely continue to cry until I find the baby bottle for her baby…and ultimately we will not leave until this bottle is found and in her hand. For the record Dads, a nerf bullet won’t substitute for anything a daughter wants…and will not reflect well with the judges for the Father of the Year award. Another note for the record, Moms always know where the baby bottles are in the house.
Conclusion, it doesn’t really matter if I get a Father of the Year award What matters is being there for my family. It means really being there with the kids. Which ultimately means it will be full of, “dohs,” and “reallys!?!,” as we laugh along the journey of life. It’s the memories we will have for a lifetime. I know that my two little ones will feel the love of this Father everyday. It’s not contrived…it’s not perfection…it’s real…and it runs deep…and in the end, that is what we are called to give.
Now I have to wake some kids up and see if I can get some clothes that come close to matching on them…Happy Father’s Day!
Breathe In & Smile Out,