The Kind of Dad

Tom went back to work today after four weeks at home with our baby girl.

(Also how was this four weeks ago?)

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My first day completely alone with the kids makes me really grateful for the partner I have in life. It has been really nice to both be home for this past month, and I am so thankful he had the opportunity and support to take that much time off. Many fathers do not, so I count this past month as a blessing (in more ways than one).

And as another Father’s Day approaches, I am so happy to watch Tom as a dad.

He is the kind of dad who drives the lawn mower to the mailbox just so his son can pick up the mail.

He is the kind of dad who makes wood replicas of his power tools so George can feel involved when they are in the shop.

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He is the kind of dad who spends hours outside playing in the dirt and doing special projects with George.

He is the kind of dad who builds forts and make believe caves.

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He is the kind of dad who drives to the back of our house so George can wave to Daddy from his window when he is on the night shift.

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He is the kind of dad who puts on a red headlamp in the middle of the night to check on the kids…like every hour.

He is the kind of dad who teaches George things all kinds of things and doesn’t stray away from a subject just because he is two years old. Hence why George knows how to build a fire…

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Most people know Tom as the tough guy, and very few people get to see the gentle side of him. Our kids get that side every day, and I love that I get to witness these moments with them.

He is definitely a fun dad, and has more patience than I do most days. He reminds me to not be so structured and enjoy every day moments with our kids. I have had many proud moments as Tom’s wife, but seeing him as a dad is probably one of my favorites.

And to think he didn’t want kids when we first met, and now he has two.

 

A Father’s Interview

I still find it funny that on our first date, Tom explicitly told me he did not want to have kids.

Here we are 8 years later celebrating his first Father’s Day.

Father's Day GPThese pictures were part of Tom’s Father’s Day gift. We are going to blow them up and hang them up in his new workshop.

I asked the new dad to reflect a little.

What was one thing you weren’t expecting as a parent? Just how much I could love a kid. I just had no idea.

How has being a dad changed you? I worry a lot. So much of the things I used to worry about for myself, I worry for him now.

What has scared you the most about parenthood? Now it’s my job to turn my kid into a decent human being. It’s one thing to do that for yourself, but to get someone else to the point where they are a decent human being is a huge task. So much of the current generation are mean and self-entitled, and I want George to grow up knowing that his failures and successes are his alone.

What have you loved/enjoyed the most about being a dad? When I get to Brenda’s (our baby sitter) and he knows who I am, and then smiles because I am there. Also using George as an excuse not to do social things because I am a homebody.

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What is one thing you did as a child that you want to do with our kids? Just the outdoors in general.

What do you want to teach George? Lots of things:Ā  How to be self-reliant, like no matter what happens he can handle it and thrive in that situation. Success in life is 100% based on the work you are willing to put in. I want to teach him to be the kind of adult that puts his morals and integrity before anything else.

Anything you are looking forward to in your 2nd year as a dad? Giving George the house and the room to explore that he deserves. I am excited to be able to finally communicate and find out what’s going on in that little mind.

What is your advice to new dad’s? Don’t listen to the naysayers. Your life isn’t over once you become a dad. Do it your way. No matter how you raise your kid or what decision you make, someone out there will say you are a bad parent. Parent the way that you think is the best for your kid.

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Tom is such a sweet dad. He is quirky and real with George. I love watching the two of them together, and their relationship is already a special one. I can see that it is hard for Tom to be away from George on his long shifts. He tries to make the most of the time they have together, even if that means that he just is holding George’s hand in the middle of the night while George is asleep. George just loves his daddy, and I can tell he already sees him as his own hero.

It has been a wild ride so far since we became parents.

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I cannot wait to see their relationship blossom even more. Can you imagine Talks with Tom AND George? I can’t wait.