Have you ever actually thought for a minute about why there are so few female engineers, builders, plumbers, mathematicians, or firefighters? Or on the flip side why there are far fewer male secretaries, flight attendants, or nurses?
Though the complete answer to this is probably more complex than we’ll ever know, understanding it is pretty simple.
You’ve likely seen the images on Facebook or Pinterest or wherever of a dad doing something fun with his child with a caption that says something like: “this is what a great dad looks like” or “I know what a great dad looks like.” You’ll see comments like these under videos of dads playing with their kids too. When I first saw these I agreed for the most part, but there was something about them that unsettled me.
I started thinking about it the other day, an activity that often gets me into trouble … but one that also saves me every day from living a life less than my dreams. In those moments of thought it dawned on me that as a society we have terribly low standards for dads. If we can look at a dad simply playing with his child and say that he is a good or great dad, then something is wrong.
I was speaking with a friend today, an utterly amazing woman named Pamela MacDonald, and we started talking about daddy activities. I lit up as I started to talk about my list of activities to do with our kids as they grow up. But Pam provided an elegant insight to the conversation. She and I talked about how I could write to my child right now.
This idea makes a lot of sense to me. I used to write love letters on some of my loneliest nights when I dreamed of sharing love with a special woman.
You know those times when you wake up from a dream and you’re still kind of in dreamland. You feel like the dream is real just for a few seconds before you realize you’re dumb (just kidding).
For example: After I got home from teaching ESL in Korea for a year I had a hard time getting my sleeping pattern back in order. One night when I woke up I was beside myself wondering how the heck I was going to make it to class in time … seeing as I would have to fly there! Boy was I in trouble … Lol.
As the days count down and my baby’s due date moves closer, I reflect daily on birth, pregnancy, parenting, etc. Amidst all of these thoughts surrounding birth, I have spent some time thinking about my own birth.
Like you, I obviously don’t remember the moments when I first opened my eyes to the world, took my first breath, or felt the cold sweetness of the air that would become my life support. But my mother has told me the story of how I was born. She has told me many times in fact …