As a father we are thought of as strong and stable. We’re the rock that our children will build the foundations of their lives on. To our children we are the comforting arms that makes all the bad in the world go away. You lift their spirits when they are down. IF ONLY THAT WAS ENOUGH! The truth is there’s a lot more to being a dad than this.
As a father you will experience joy, happinesses, sadness, elation, pride, but never disappointment. That’s because you will love your child unconditionally always. As such disappointment is never something you feel. You might question choices or decisions but as a father you have to learn to accept your children’s decisions about their lives. It’s tough but you cannot put an old head on young shoulders and your children will never learn anything that way so you have to let them make their own mistakes so that next time they hopefully make the right decision for themselves.
If you are anything like me you will feel that you are screwing up this fatherhood gig on a daily basis. Why? Well, we are all human. We have flaws, weaknesses and vulnerabilities. I feel I’m not good enough to be a father, because being a father makes me question myself and as your child grows you have to change and evolve your style of being a father and this is without question when you get it wrong. You mess it up because being a father is tough. None of us were born to do a more important job than fatherhood. There’s no training. You have to make it up as you go along, and this in itself makes you question yourself.
For all the times I have screwed it up, and believe me there have been plenty of time, I still truly believe it’s the best job in the world. Fatherhood brings contentment, and fulfilment. It drives you to be a better person, to be less selfish, more patient, and being able to nurture and guide your child through the minefield of life in the 21st century is what it’s all about. Being a father is a vocation. No dad is born a natural father. It is something we will all work very hard to become.
One of the hardest parts of fatherhood is knowing when you have to let go. This is so difficult to judge and that’s the hardest part of fatherhood. Letting your child grow wings and find their own way in life. Your job at that point is done. You can only hope that what you have done is good enough and that the things you have taught and shown your child will serve them well throughout their life.
I’m not perfect. I have not been the perfect father. I can only say I have tried my best and yes at times it was hopefully good enough, but there will have been times when I got it very wrong. However I have always showed my children love, affection and time as well as a willingness to listen and an overpowering feeling to protect them from anything in life. Sometimes I’ve been way too protective, but it’s an instinct that you cannot change once you are a father because you sign-up to protect, love and guide your child to adulthood. If that’s wrong then I have got it all wrong.
This post was inspired by Talya who blogs at Motherhood The Real Deal Thank You!