The Joys of FatherhoodCraig Nathanson
First let me say ‘’Happy Father’s day to all the dad’s out there in the world.
In thinking about ‘’The Joys of Fatherhood ‘’ I wrote a short story which helped me reflect . I’d like to share this with you. As I do, perhaps you can reflect as well. For moms, simply replace the word father with mother and you can share in this story.
If only I had read the book about fatherhood, I would have; Known what to expect. I would have prepared to have all the right answers at just the right moments.
I would have know when to listen, when to speak, when to give an opinion and when to ask questions.
I would have practiced more, gotten into shape, been more consistent. If only I had read the book, I would have;
Made a few less hard pancakes,
Tightened a few more bolts myself and hired out less.
I would have learned how to balance the art of listening vs. wanting to tell my children exactly the right answer before they had finished telling me what the problem was.
If only I had read the book; I would have known that when a child speaks, it’s time to listen EVEN if a game is on, or if I am tired after a long day or if tomorrow would have been a better day to talk.
I would have known to treasure those special moments of laughing, wrestling and telling silly stories.
If only I had read the book; I would have known in advance that it takes approximately 35 minutes to clean up silly putty off the floor, 45 minutes to get crayon marks off the wall and about a week to get a service out if the two are combined with paint. I would have known what to do when faced without diapers in the diaper bag in the middle of a park on a beautiful summer day. I would have known that time management skills, perseverance and a little luck couldn’t carry me through this one.
I would have known though that a smile always helps.
If I had read the book; I surely would have known to get less sleep, spend more time with my spouse discussing a consistent discipline strategy and then armed together with such a strategy, faced the force in the morning with vigor, at least through breakfast
Speaking of breakfast, If I had read the book; I would have known that you make sure the entire family eats your specialty despite protests and question’s like, what is that?
If I had read the book; I would have known to stay awake at Monday night scout meetings and Saturday morning soccer practice.
I would have known to share the Gerber jar bananas just a little bit more with the rest of the family.
If I had read the book; I would have known that your children might listen to the words but pay more attention to your actions.
I would have known it’s a good thing to share your goals and dreams with your children because it helps them develop their own.Right Now,
If I was able just for a moment to leap forward in time and rock back and forth in my rocking chair now over 90 years of age, what would I know about fatherhood?
Well I know now that fatherhood is both an accomplishment and a process. I don’t remember much about those long days at the office, those mounds of paperwork and long business trips.
I do remember the trips to the ice cream store, the soccer games, the birthday parties and that baby formula stain on my clean shirt during that ever so important presentation.
Maybe I’ll just take these memories back to today’s Fathers Day and just appreciate what I have.
Maybe If I had read the book; I would have been smarter, prepared with all the right actions and all the right moves at all the right times. I would have been calm when required and stern when necessary. I would have done everything just right.
But maybe perhaps, I wouldn’t have enjoyed myself quite as much.
If I had read the book; I might have missed the point that fatherhood is not something that can be acted, rehearsed or imagined; It must be experienced each and every moment of each and every day…..
If I had read the book; I might have missed all those cuddles, all those smiles and a chance to share with you now about the
j o y s o f F a t h e r h o o d !
T h a n k y o u a n d H a p p y F a t h e r s d a y t o a l l ! !
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