To Be a Dad is to Be Flawed, and Loved

I’ve talked before how I wasn’t ever sure I wanted to have kids of my own. I was content in being selfish. I enjoyed not having any major responsibilities, outside of paying my rent, and having enough money to go hang out with my friends after the bills were paid.
Even after I started dating my wife; we would go on winery tours or weekend-long trips to Vegas at a moment’s notice like we didn’t have a care in the world. Because we didn’t. Then this funny thing happens. You get married, you start taking life a little more seriously; you start settling down, and naturally the conversation of having kids comes up. Even then, I wasn’t sure I wanted kids.

It was no longer about my freedom, or losing out on doing whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted. No, I was out of excuses. Now it was because of the real reason I was always hesitant. I didn’t want to be the kind of parent that I grew up around. I didn’t want the ghosts of my abusive childhood (at the hands of my mother) coming back, infecting the life of another innocent child. I didn’t want to end up abandoning my child like I felt my father did to me. Most of all I didn’t want someone to think they loved me, only to find out how flawed and broken I was.  But he came anyway. My son was born in early 2012.
I will always remember the day my son was born, but more importantly, I will always remember the feeling that came over me the second they put him in my arms. I literally felt like I was a different person; a new person. Almost like the dad in me was born at the exact moment my son was born. Just seconds prior I was just a guy. Yes, I was a husband to my wife, but at that exact moment I became someone’s father. I had participated in creating life. I have never felt anything that powerful in my life. I couldn’t wait to do all the dad things.
Like skin to skin contact.
Or napping with my son. Don’t let this picture fool you, he never slept that much.
I would love to sit here and tell you that the second I held my son all my fears melted away, or that I was no longer plagued by doubt and depression because of the love my son has for me, but we all know that’s not how life works. It’s still a continual struggle. But I can I tell you one thing for sure – my son loves me no matter what.
My son is like my shadow. He wants to be everywhere I am, and doing everything I’m doing. He literally sees me as a super hero, and while I know I’m far from being Super Man, and I have a lot of work to do on myself, it makes it just a little bit easier knowing someone out there sees you better than you see yourself. So who am I to argue?
So, to my son I say, #ThanksBaby for loving me the way you do. But more importantly, thank you for showing me that even though I am flawed, I am loved. Oh…and to my daughter arriving very soon…
#ThanksBaby for giving me another shot at this whole dad thing. Round 1 was pretty cool, and I can’t wait for Round 2.

Disclosure: I have partnered with Life of Dad  and Pampers for this promotion.


8 thoughts on “To Be a Dad is to Be Flawed, and Loved

  • June 17, 2016 at 3:39 am

    This is beautiful. Sniffing and knowing you are gonna ROCK this dad of a daughter thing as much as you do the dad of a son.

  • June 20, 2016 at 3:59 am

    I love the matching Superman shirts…I tried getting Dude to wear the same outfit as I do; but 16-year-olds have a mind of their own.

  • August 26, 2016 at 8:55 pm

    Ok, that last post of yours I read made me smile.. this one nearly made me tear up. Being from a similar background (abusive mom, absent dad) I felt pretty much the same way when I first began to question the wisdom in having kids. I didn’t think I was fit to be a parent –I mean, looking at what I came from, I didn’t think it was possible for me to be a good mom.
    But life, time and experience change a human being greatly. The person we are raised to be doesn’t have to be the person we settle on being. The mom I am today is far from perfect, but I know that my kids will never once doubt the love of both their parents. they will never question their own self worth, especially not in the eyes of their parents, and they will never live in fear. I think, when it comes to parenting, imperfection is sort of part of the territory… but trying –giving it all we got– that’s what its really all about.
    Well that, and the fact that having kids is the single most rewarding thing in the world. They give us so much more than we give them. I can’t even imagine how dull my life would be without my regrets.
    Anyway, I just wanted to say… great post.

  • Pingback: Dear Son, Don’t Ever Change | Papa Does Preach

  • Pingback: #ThanksBaby For Saving Me | Papa Does Preach

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