It’s Ash Wednesday1, so I’m officially kicking off my #40Days40Dads campaign to gather intelligence, inspiration and maybe even a few funny stories from any dad who is willing to share. If all goes well, there will be 40 different dad stories on this blog by the end of Lent, but I’m going to need a lot more volunteers to make that happen. After reading today’s entry, however, I’m sure fathers everywhere will be clambering to fill out my questionnaire and join the fray to drop their knowledge. So without further ado…
Dad #1: Segundo
I promised anonymity to any participating dad who desired it, so I will simply state that Segundo2 and I met in college and are working on our second decade of friendship. Much about our lives has changed over the years, and I am now on track to join him in the fatherhood game–where he has a bit of a head start.
Segundo is the father of two daughters, ages 4 and 1.
What was the moment when you first felt like a father?
It’s all a blur now. A good estimate would be the moment when elder family members dispersed a few days after bringing Daughter Number One (DN1) home, leaving just my wife and me with this new child. At that moment, you’d better be a dad or you’re gonna have a bad day.
What’s your favorite part about being a father?
At first it is sharing with these small people the things from my life that are important, whether having them spend time with family or bringing them to things that interest me, like baseball games. But eventually they develop their own interests, especially Daughter Number One who is now in preschool. She is starting to share her things of interest with me.
What’s the hardest part about being a father?
DN1 told me via Skype the other day “You should come home tomorrow morning.” Unfortunately, that moment is about six months away, given the nature of my current employment abroad. I hope she wasn’t expecting me there the next morning.
What’s the dumbest/funniest thing that your kid has cried about or fought with you over?
Combing DN1’s hair always results in shrieks, no matter how gentle. Daughter Number Two (DN2) has not acquired this habit, so far as I know. But DN2 wants to do everything that her big sister does, so we’ll see how long that lasts…
What are you most proud of having taught/shared with your kids or what are you most looking forward to teaching/sharing with them?
Family traditions are good for linking kids to people and things that came before. So I look forward to linking them to both mine and their mom’s, and someday they’ll understand what it means.
What’s your favorite thing about your kids?
Their uninhibited nature. You know what they think.
If you could go back in time and give yourself a piece of advice when you first became a father, what would you say?
Make the time to take care of yourself. Yeah, it’s all about the baby, but you can’t take care of anyone else if you’re not fit.
Any other comments to share on fatherhood?
Be nice to your wife.
Thanks again to Segundo for kicking things off! If you’re a father or you know a father who would like to share his story, send him to this link to answer the questions. Stay tuned for another dad’s crib notes tomorrow!