It’s tough to imagine my life without my wife and kids now. If not for them, I wonder what lens I would view the world through. Through my relationship with them, my view of world events has taken many turns. I have been all things from overprotective and scared for the lives of my children, to defiant and at times militant against a brutal and controlling world of negativity.
Just yesterday, a neighbor recollected a discouraging comment from a family member. Something along the lines of “…it would be tough to feel good about bringing a child into the world today”. I’ve seen this point of view with great simpathy.
Part of me wants to look at today’s world with sorrow, disappointment, and at times, downright disgust. As bad as it seems, there have been people feeling similarly for generations. Ponderings from the past and present – “How have we strayed so far from God” and “Jesus has to be on his way soon” or “Things just can’t get much worse…”
In this journey of life, we have taken the not-so-easy road to homeschool our children. To be clear, there has been a place for public education, and there still is. The decision to do so may have been hatched during one of my “militant” phases, but it is a decision we do not look upon with regret. In the last year, never has it been more apparent we are on the right track. Through this process, there is a sense of hope seldom found anywhere else. Ownership, responsibility, commitment, courtesy, faithfulness. These are just a few of the values missing from many vocabularies today.
When we attend gatherings of families today who are choosing to take on the leadership, and lost lexicon of true education, I am blown away. What we are witnessing is as close to revolutionary as I can imagine, yet so naturally and biblically basic. The love poured out upon our children through the hard work of loving parents is the baseline of humanity.
There’s been a shift. A bit of a regrouping of priorities, and blogging has come in as one of my smaller aggregate time expenditures.
The post a day was lofty, but manageable if other “rocks in my jar” were not so big right now. There is part of me that wants my blog to be a bigger priority, but for many reasons, it’s not. And that’s ok.
Pragmatism was a word I shied away from for a long time. For more and more reasons lately I’m begining to grow fond of the practice. Two main reasons:
- Life is a work in progress. There are lots of things I’ve had to re-prioritize in order to live the life God has called me to.
- I’m a slow learner. My bride would say that’s a cop out – but it’s true.
I’m taking a full accounting and a pragmatic evaluation of where my family finds itself now. To get my big rocks in first, I’ll see about a blog a week. If more turn up, it’s Gods grace and gravy on top!
It is time to plant a garden. Will this place be the best place on the property to plant? It may, or it may not. It’s time to try.
Here is to things worth trying. Here is to moving forward. Here is to soaking your brand new birthday shirt with hard earned sweat, before its first wash. Here is to not sitting around and wondering, over-analyzing, getting upset, or appologizing when it does not quite work out – at least the way you had in mind.
Through it all, here is to remembering it was your Dad who taught you to work like this.
Thanks for our wonderful family for the help this weekend. Thanks for the wonderful weather, and the land we have been blessed with. Thanks for the day I was born 37 years ago, the parents who raised me, the Father who forgives me, the children who teach me, and thanks for someone to share the next 37 years and beyond.
To my little man-
You are a gift. A natural protector, and tender loving soul.
I pray God will lead me in a way to strengthen and not discourage your talents and gifts. May you always strive to build up and encourage your sisters, your mother, and the family you will lead.
And always remember to have fun.
As fathers, there may be no better work we do than to forgive our children. As children ourselves, there is no greater give we can receive.
A word, a comfort, a gift. A reflection of our Father’s mercy and love.
To forgive does not come easy to our flesh. We hold on to pride and our idea of perfection. When we truly can give in to Grace, and acknowledge our own ability to forgive, we are set free.
Often, the simple answers are best. The gifts that cannot be purchased are those most valuable.
To my second baby bear.
You are a fabulous gem. A fine sparkling stone, with a dimple set just so.
A best buddy to your younger brother, and a loving, loyal sister to our oldest. A true blessing to us all.
There are times, more frequent than I’d like, when I forget your unique and important place in our lives. I will work to be a better “Daddy Pommy” for you.
You are sensitive and sweet. You are my pipsqueak, my pommy, and my likeness in so many ways.
I love you little one. Good night.
Being fully prepared to be underwhelmed at the state of a dated theme park, I was again in awe of what the folks at Walt Disney World continue to do.
The delight to be a kid, at any age, unashamedly. To be taken aback, brought to tears at the sight of other people’s kids’ joy-not to mention your own, to make the angry world go away, and to make time stand still.
Something to Celebrate!
What’s Dear ol’ Dad going to do now?
I’M GOING TO DISNEY WORLD! WITH MY WIFE AND KIDS!
We leave in the morning.
To my oldest and first baby bear.
I look at you and smile. Just can’t help it.
The beauty you bring to my eyes, plays like a thousand violins to the depth of my heart.
I’ll never have another first daughter.
You were made for me.
We broke it to the kids that in 3 days, we are heading to Walt Disney World. Just now, a giddy 4-year old boy shuffled down the stairs to ask how many days until we are at Disney. I haven’t counted, but there have been at least a dozen variations (very slight) of this question posed by the little man today. Sweet dreams, buddy.
It will be a quick vacation, but one we will surely cherish. Although we have made trips, visits, and seen many sights in the last year or so, we have made very few just the 5 of us. A bit of a selfish feeling, but ultimately, we need the time together. Very excited about wrapping up the week, and getting on the road by Wednesday.
We had intended today to be a restful one, and it did start out that way. A little extra recharge for the batteries by sleeping in, followed by a relaxing breakfast. Around lunch time, we scooted out the door to pick up a few items for the trip – in comes Parkinson’s Law. Seems that no matter how hard we try, we end up at home pushing the limits of hunger and patience.
Hunger and extended hours at the mall nearly got the best of me. While cooking dinner with my lovely bride, I began to loose my cool. Before doing so, I stepped out of the room to avoid taking it our on the innocent.
A dinner was thrown together, children were shuttled from supper to bed. Not according to the original plan, but it worked. Patience was a must, with a little forgiveness thrown in.
Another wanderer down the stairs while writing this – big hugs, and big smiles from the oldest. My prayer – help me live up to this incredible job, help me take the next step and not need as much forgiveness. Love-