|A hard but poignant way to learn |
how to be a dad--in the NICU (1996)
(doing kangaroo care, skin to skin)
This morning at church, our wonderful Irish friend Ruth did the children's homily, and she talked with the kids about all the various fathers we might have in our lives beyond our regular fathers--godfathers, fathers-in-law, stepfathers, foster fathers, uncles, etc.--and then she asked each of the children if they wanted to give their own dad a compliment. Nicholas raised his hand immediately and responded, "My dad is awesome!!" Of course, Mike was completely embarrassed and red in the face (kidding!). Actually, he waved his hands around and shouted out "and humble!!"
But he is awesome--it's true. And here's why:
1. He is an engaged stay-at-home dad, giving our boys a wonderful role model of a caring, compassionate father who is actively involved in their daily lives. A brand new stay-at-home dad, Jon, gave a wonderful sermon at church today, and he said the one thing in his life he knew he wanted to do was to be a dad...and he feels very lucky to be able to stay at home caring for his son, Isaac...and how 30 years ago this would not have been an option like it is now.
|Mike with toddler Chris in Homer, AK (1998)|
|With Chris at age 3 or 4|
4. Our sons have inherited Mike's love for the spotlight and the stage...and Kieran's acquired his booming voice. As a theater/music fan, I am really glad our kids are drawn to drama...I can't relate to this desire to be onstage, but I appreciate it about all of them. Today our head sound guy at church came up to me and told me I needed to really sing into the microphone...but last week he told Mike that he had to stand back farther away from the microphone! Apparently Mike's the only one in the church who doesn't need to stand close to the mike (this probably applies to Kieran, too).
5. He is SO MUCH nicer than me. Most of the time, that is. He's the one who the kids can sucker into giving them stuff (Cheetos, fast food, quarters to play video games), and he's also the one more likely to give money to people at the door or on the street. He's generous and compassionate, with a few exceptions (our crazy next-door neighbor is one). Once you cross him though--or be mean to me or someone else he loves--watch out!
|With two sons (2003)|
|With baby Kieran (2003)|
7. How many kids are lucky enough to have an Oxford-educated primary caregiver? The guy has an amazing vocabulary; is well versed in literature, politics, geography, and current events; speaks several languages (at least a little) and knows his Latin roots; is a gifted, creative writer (which someday the world will know); and believes in and understands people. So he's not a crafty dad...and he might not always have the healthiest snacks at the park...but those are small potatoes.
|See, the fun parent! (2005)|
9. He's raising our sons to be kind, fun, expressive, and funny young men. They are happy and know they are loved. I couldn't ask for more than that.
10. He loves me--and he loves our family, both immediate and extended. I am grateful to share my life with someone who truly values family--both his original family and the one we have created together. No other words needed! Just a few more photos...
|With little Kieran|
|Eating ice cream with Kieran at Holden Village (2005)|
|Welcoming Nicholas (2006)|
|With Chris (2006)|
|Nicholas' first Christmas (2006)|
|Napping buddies (2007)|
|With Kieran (2007)|
|At the beach (2008)|
|In Hawaii (2008)|
|Valentine's Day 2009|
|Niagara Falls, Ontario (2009)|
|Victoria, BC (2009)|
|Meeting me downtown for lunch (2010)|
|Indulging Kieran in his firepit stage! (2011)|
|Boys who read (2011)|
|At the beach (2011)|
|Birthday present? (2011)|
|Parent helping at preschool (2012)|
|Holden Village (2012)|
|At the beach (2012)|
|Always look for a partner who loves his/her mother!|
|Farmers Market, 2012|
|Zoo earlier this year|
|At Skyline Restaurant, 2013|
|Fathers' Day 2013|
Check out the other lists (TV shows gone too soon) at The Good Life!