On my best day as a Dad I can be found thanking God for two children who wake up healthy and go to bed knowing that their parents are focused on getting them and our family through a life they have never before experienced.
On my worst day as a Dad I can be found thanking God for two children who wake up healthy and go to bed knowing that their parents are focused on getting them and our family through a life they have never before experienced.
And, so it goes in this blink of any eye experience that is currently the “new normal” in our lives.
There’s nothing normal about this current moment of “new normal.” And, I would hardly attempt to speak to my life being the life anybody else has to live right now anywhere in the world.
There’s enough people telling other people how to get through the days and nights of the “new normal” and I am not going to be another one attempting to do so.
There are three areas of focus for me as I do what I have to do to get through these days.
I focus on my work at http://www.sparekey.org
I focus on my family and their place in the world.
I focus on my faith and do what I can to make a difference in the world around me.
Beyond that there’s not much else I can do or control despite my internal hard wiring that makes me think I can.
I’m a Dad. Dad’s think they are in control and in charge of everything.
But, in reality, we’re not.
What we are in charge of, though, is being what kind of Dad we are able to be at the moment in time we are called on to be when our kids need us to be their Dad.
And now, at this moment in my children’s life, they need their Dad to be the kind of Dad they will remember me to be at the end of my life.
I will be the Dad that tries valiantly to keep up with his 19 year old son as we train for his first marathon in July. I won’t run as fast as he can but I am determined to be able to run as far as he will be when we take to the course in Ireland in July.
The miles I run compared to the miles he runs are slower and remind me that I am every single one of the 56 years I am today.
But when I write my miles on the chalkboard and look at how far he has already gone I am reminded just how far he will go in his life. Farther and faster than his Dad and for that I am grateful and proud of who and what he is and always will be.
I will be the Dad that plays catch with a Daughter whose passion for all she does makes me smile, laugh and beam with pride.
I will be the Dad that does Tik Tok because it make her laugh to the point of tears and because right now she doesn’t need me to tell her that it’s silly or makes me feel old and out of shape.
She needs me to be the Dad right now that she will remember years from now.
In this time together we have played catch. We have taken walks. We have had long conversations about the future. We have sewed and delivered masks together.
With my son we have watched movies together while building Lego ships and challenged one another to see who can run farther (he will) and run faster (he will) and I have learned to make nachos that rival anything he says he has ever had before.
I have work to do. And, I do it.
I have a Team at http://www.sparekey.org that needs me to be the kind of leader my Board of Directors wants me to be, that donors insist I be and families depend upon me to be.
That this is new territory to me doesn’t matter to the world around me. The world around me has enough problems and challenges. It doesn’t need me to add to its burden.
It needs me to figure it out. It needs me to be part of the solution not the problem.
It needs me to do everything I can do, know how to do and am capable of doing as well and as often and as urgently as it needs to be done.
That’s the Dad in me.
And, that, above all else, defines who I am and ever have been the moment that my children arrived in this world.
And so, on this early morning when I cannot sleep because my allergies won’t allow it with my snoring dog at my feet and the rest of the world as silent as I want it to be, I know this to be true:
I will remember most was that I was the Dad I needed to be for them and for me.