Midday Fatherhood Ruminations

It was a lifeless, vapid meeting. You know the kind. The ones that crush your soul without any effort whatsoever. I had one of those today. And as I looked out the window, watching the rain come down out of a bleak and dreary sky while someone droned on and on about something nobody was going to remember about five seconds later much less five months or years from now, my mind wandered. I admit it. It happens.

And while it wandered, I couldn’t get thoughts or images of my son out of my head. Images of when he was sitting in a car seat and smiling even though he had no teeth. Images of him laughing as I tossed him up in the air. One time I tossed him in the air and hit his head on a ceiling fan that thankfully, was spinning very slowly. I remember the stunned look of his face when his little head hit the fan. He didn’t cry, but I remember how I held him afterwards and how I just wanted to make sure he was OK. There were a lot of images me holding my son flashing through my mind during that meeting.

Now, he’s older. He starts middle school next year. And while I welcome the idea that he’s getting bigger – in essence, the fact that he’s getting older and so am I – I can’t help but long for the days when he wasn’t so big. When he didn’t enunciate so clearly. The days before he peppered his sentences with words like “obliterated.” Or “lunar colonization” and “legal disclaimer.” No, this is no ordinary boy. And I’m so glad he isn’t.

But I still do wish we could freeze time, at least every once in a while.  I wish I could have more time with him at that stage. Not that I regret not spending more time with him, I think I did a good job on that front. I know I’ve spent more time with him than my dad spent with me. I say that without arrogance or contempt, it’s just a fact. My dad worked a lot of different jobs, sometimes worked strange hours. I’ve been pretty lucky from that standpoint, since I haven’t had to do some of the things my dad did. So maybe I’ve been able to do some things a bit better than my dad.

And I guess that’s the best we can hope for: not to get everything right or be perfect, but to just be better than our predecessors. I can accept that as a goal, and hopefully my son can too. With any luck he’ll do better than I did.

As for the meeting? Well, it just wasn’t that important.


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  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Lisa Frame, Lori Pace. Lori Pace said: RT @Daily_Pinch: Sometimes, @prof_pinch makes me cry my eyes out–in a good way. Midday Fatherhood Ruminations http://bit.ly/be6TSG […]

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