Recently, my wife left me. Ok, ok – she didn’t “leave me” leave me. Don’t start jumping to conclusions. Her brother was graduating college in Boston, and she went away for a weekend to support him. You know what that means. I spent the weekend wifeless with all 3 kids (ages 4, 3 & 1). This was a first time thing for me. I had never been without her and with all three baby Moreys overnight before, and I was stressing about it big time. How in the world was I going to do this without my wife? I get stressed out watching them for a few hours by myself, so how was I going to make it through a whole weekend?
I may have let them watch too much television, said yes way too many times when they pleaded for those chewy chocolate chip cookies, filled their hungry little mouths with McDonalds’ french fries, let them bathe in the florida dirt that is our backyard, and undo every corner of the house that my wife had most likely spent hours organizing. They may have stayed up past their usual bedtime and forgotten to brush their teeth, but guess what? We all survived. And honestly, we did more than just survive, we had fun too. We had intense wrestling tournaments, we painted pictures even van Gogh would approve of for mommy, we ate ALL the snacks, we watched movies, we played make believe with action figures and dolls, we cuddled, we kissed, we belly laughed and we said I love you to each other like a million times… we were just fully in the moment, our moment, enjoying each other.
The Answer is Simple
With the stresses working full time, owning a business, being uber involved in church, and indulging in my guilty pleasure of fishing too often, it is hard to find a good balance between family time and everything else. But, when I really think to myself, “Where do I wish I was at this very moment?”, the answer is always, “with my family”. No matter what I am doing, who I am with, the success I am enjoying, the answer is always “with my family”. Our most precious resource is time, and what we do with it determines the kind of person we are and the person we will become. You don’t look back on your life and say, “Oh man, I wish I would have spent less time with my family”. This life goes by way too fast, and I feel like we all spend way too much time being busy.
My children are the greatest gift God has ever given me. When I look at them I feel overwhelmed with joy and love. Those moments of hugs and kisses and hearing them say, “I love you daddy,” makes everything I do worth it. So, how do you be a good dad? I think the answer is pretty simple. You just be there, love unconditionally, and cherish every moment like it was your last. When that day comes and I take my last breath, I want to say… what a great life I have lived. I loved hard and didn’t take a single moment for granted. I laughed, learned, and had millions of special moments with my wife, children, and grandchildren. God is so good and I lived a full, blessed life on this earth, and I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to be a good dad.