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Tuesday, May 20th, 2014
3 years, 6 months.
Yes, that’s me. Those are my feet sticking out from underneath all of the couch cushions and accent pillows in our living room.
When that picture was taken, I was in somewhat of a meditative state; not simply because my oxygen supply was being fairly limited, but also because it was sort of relaxing in there.
In fact, I had no idea Mommy even took that picture until I was going through the picture folder on my flash drive yesterday, looking for a something else.
Sure, I heard what was going on outside my world of pillows:
“Hey Mommy! Daddy’s all covered. Look at Daddy. I finished his cage now.”
Then I heard your footsteps as you approached me. I saw a small opening appear between the pillows, with light coming through.
“Here you go, Tiger. Here’s your food!”
Apparently pet tigers like to eat (plastic) snakes.
This routine has become the norm. I can see why.
It allows you to completely make a mess and get away with it, as you pretend you are building a cage for your Daddy, who happens to be a tiger.
I really don’t mind it at all. Like I said, it sort of gives me 12 minutes or more of time to just zone-out on the living room floor.
With a schedule as busy as mine, I typically don’t make time for zoning out… other than when I’m running or sleeping.
It’s not so much a desperate attempt to make time for myself as it is me trying to multitask:
By being your tiger in a cage, I can spend quality time with you; because to you, I’m playing.
And I can rest my mind for a little while; because to me, being buried in a “cage” of pillows is actually relaxing.
Yes, that’s me multitasking. It’s Daddy in his… quiet place.
Keep your kids busy with these chore guides.
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Tuesday, May 6th, 2014
3 years, 5 months.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again:
You’re a much more daring little boy than I was at 3 years old; 30 years ago back in 1984.
Last week while test driving a Lexus IS-F for my other writing gig, you and I discovered a passageway that connects the trunk to the back set.
It’s a very small passageway, barely big enough for me to fit my head through.
We had just gotten home from school and you wanted to play in the car while Mommy started dinner.
With you in the trunk while the trunk door was open, I walked over to back seat passageway to look at you from the other side.
But in the 5 seconds it took me to get there, you had already decided to see if you could fit through the hole, and sure enough, you did. You squeezed through!
There you were, so proud of yourself for being my little proactive spelunker.
I admit, I find it quite impressive. That’s a good skill to have, right?
We learned a few days later that Mommy’s Honda Accord, as well as the Hyundai Azera we’re driving this week, have similar passageways.
(I wonder if other little 3 year-olds across America have discovered this cool trick too?)
Like a Parrothead enjoying touring all the Margaritavilles in the world, you are now making a hobby out of crawling through various car trunks to the back seat.
I’ve been supervising the whole thing each day for the past week as I let you play in the car until dinner time.
That’s what dads are for, right? It’s part of my job description to help lead you to these adventures, also known as dadventures.
There are just some things you’re going to exclusively discover and experience thanks to your daddy. This is probably one of them.
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Friday, December 6th, 2013
I remember those sort of strange nights as a kid when my dad was in charge of providing me grub and conversation. But it was a nice change, too.
Every once in a while, like tonight, there is that rare occasion where it’s just you and me for dinner time.
What’s for dinner? Ah, leftover Annie’s Mac and Cheese in the fridge, which you insist on eating on cold- and of course, I don’t argue.
Applesauce too. Even half of an unfinished English muffin pizza that Mommy made you from… a few (?) days ago.
No table required. We both just dined on leftovers from the fridge, at the bar. You quickly resorted to losing the spoon and just eating with your hands.
I was impressed with your barbaric ways.
Lucky for you, there happened to be a chocolate covered cream treat that Mommy had brought home from work.
You even got dessert! Score!
But yes, the conversation during “Daddy does dinner” nights is… sort of caveman.
All I know is, there is silence interupted by grunts. Not to mention, no real eye contact. What would have been at least a 25 minute meal had Mommy been there, it gets edited down to no more than 8 minutes when Daddy’s hosting dinner.
I think part of the reason is because we have to save our energy for our “post dinner scuffle.”
There’s the part where we can go in the hallway and I roll Mommy’s exercise ball at you like you’re Indiana Jones. And where Daddy becomes a ridable bull.
And your favorite, where you grab a random kitchen utensil and use it to “chomp Daddy’s pasta hair” while riding on my shoulders.
So, yeah. Dinner time’s a bit different than Daddy, instead of Mommy. As much fun as we do have together for dinner, I still know you’d rather Mommy to be in charge of dinner instead.
I can still roll her exercise ball at you anyway.
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Friday, September 20th, 2013
2 years, 10 months.
I would like to believe that I will grow old with you. That’s definitely my goal.
But something I am forcing myself to think about is… what if I didn’t? What if right now, something happened to me?
Would you actually remember me at this point in your life?
Would you read these near daily letters I’ve written to you and simply think about how you sort of remember me?
Or is there any possiblity that our memories together have stuck with you enough that I’ll always be a part of you, without any visual prompts needed?
It’s a strange and sad thought for me because my life is consumed by you. I remember everything we do and say together.
What if you only had these letters to go by to know who I was? Have I been thorough and open enough so that you would know who I really am and what mattered to me?
And if not, what would I want you to know?
I hope it would be obvious that I loved you and Mommy more than anything; that my world would fall apart without either of you in it.
I hope you would be able to see that my faith in God was what my relationship with you and Mommy was built on, despite my shortcomings which often reveal themselves in these letters.
I hope there would be no question that I was an eccentric man who lived an interesting life. It matters to me that you know this about me, because I wish the same for you.
Well, I’m sure I could go on and on about what I would want you to know about me, about yourself at this age, and about life itself.
But again, I plan to be around a very long time. So if I get my wish, there will be plenty of more letters to write you in these decades to come. I’ll tell you all about it.
I love you.
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Sunday, April 28th, 2013
2 years, 5 months.
Last Thursday on the drive to school, I popped in one of my favorite CD’s ever, Mat Kearney’s Young Love.
In a random and successful effort to find a new way to entertain you, I handed over the jewel case with the lyrics; which instantly became a storybook to you.
While I’ve heard every one of those songs at least 273 times, a phrase from the very first song, “Hey Mama,” caught my attention:
“What are you doing for the rest of your life?”
It’s such an understated question. Naturally, though, the answer is simple:
You and Mommy. In other words, whatever I am doing for the rest of my life, it revolves around the two of you.
Granted, I had obviously given plenty of prior thought of spending the rest of my life with Mommy nearly five years ago when we got married.
But as for you, I hadn’t truly consciously put you in that same category; at least not since you were a newborn.
No matter what my calender says, your name is on every day for the rest of my life. There will never be a day that you don’t consume my thoughts.
It’s one of those things that every dad-to-be dwells on. I can remember now, how for the months leading up to your birth, I would constantly think about how you would forever change my life.
I would think about how my existence in this world would now cause a ripple effect which would be undeniable- simply because I was responsible in bringing you into this world, and more importantly, because the way I would raise you would make who you would become; for better or for worse.
So yeah, I haven’t given too much thought about that in the past nearly two and a half years. I’ve had so many other dad-related thoughts to consume my mind since then.
And that just goes to show you… you’re what I’m doing for the rest of my life.
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