Friday, February 28, 2014

Fatherhood - Life Changing

Changing Fatherhood

Fatherhood changed me immensely. I had never finished anything until my daughter was born. With my daughter's birth, I made the commitment to myself to always be a guiding light for her, to read, listen, and absorb everything I could to help her reach her potential. This is the only commitment I have ever really stuck to. Most of my other goals have not been satisfied, but the goal to be a good father to my daughter has been successful!

Read it until I memorize it!

This is why I decided to start a blog entitled "Papa Green Bean". It is designed for first time parents but, maybe, it is subconsciously written for the other dads out there who are searching for answers to fatherhood.  First time daddies who want more than anything to be a positive role model to their son or daughter, or both. 

The opening paragraph above was a comment I made in response to Eric Bennion's Great Dads Society Linked In discussion. Eric posted a link to and their celebration of 20 years of changing fatherhood. They interview Wilburn Carver as a shining example of how fathers can break the stereotype generational past of absent fathers. It struck a chord with me and is quite inspirational.

Planning my escape!

My father was not absent. He traveled a good bit but was always available at home. My dad was a devoted coach in sports and we played a lot of baseball, basketball, and football growing up. We also played all kinds of games inside our home, like ping pong, hearts and monopoly. I always respected my dad greatly. Looking back, one aspect of growing up with my father I now wish had been more present, was the emotional and verbal closeness within a parent & child relationship. 

Generational stereo typical to be sure. Fathers are not supposed to be emotionally close to anyone are they? Aren't they supposed to be silent but strong figures? Mysterious men are more attractive to women, right? I don't agree.

Today's Dads...
  • do laundry, cook and laugh at themselves 
  • are honest with their emotions - they cry at movies!
  • are not afraid to say "I don't know"
  • read to and with their children 
  • listen & don't try to solve every issue with logic
  • hug & say "I love you"
  • say "Try your best"
  • encourage, not discourage
  • let loose and play with their children imaginatively 
  • do not tease, but have a healthy sense of humor with a twinkle in the eye!

Fatherhood is changing for the better. There are more stay-at-home fathers. Fathers are also becoming more in tune with the intricacies of what matters in life. Dads are spending more quality time with their families. No doubt, It's exhausting to play with your toddler, devoting 100% of your attention. But this is what it takes early on in their life. It is so worth it.

Best, Papa Green Bean

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