Even though I have more than a few reasons to be called a father, today is an odd day for me. I have two Goddaughters, Erin and Molly, and I take my role with them very seriously. I also have Joseph, our little angel. But as folks in good spirit shook my hand, called and posted a Happy Fathers Day, I cannot fully accept it. I offer no disrespect to the three mentioned, but it's the one on the way that will fulfill this day in the future for me.
As I am days away from our first child, that we take home, I look around me for the examples I can follow. Many men have gone before me and done a great job, and a bad job. I want to do what is required to come out as one of the good ones. I am sure few, if any men go into this endeavor wanting to be the bad one. But want does it take to be the good one? Can I be as good, fair and loving as my Dad? Sure I love my wife, and I love my family, but this isn't enough. I pray that I will have what it takes, but prayer to be good is simply not enough either.
I pray for, and commit to work on, the following:
1. Patience. Patience for all the things my wife has to go through becoming a Mom. She is a beautiful person, and this road has been longer for her than one I could walk myself. I want to be there for her first, be the man she deserves, the man she can rely on, even when the baby is up in the middle of the night and we don't know what to do.
2. Patience. Patience for the little bundle that my heart pours joy for even now. I haven't met this child yet, but I know there will be difficult moments at the start. Crying, needing fed, and not being settled. I don't have the worlds longest fuse, and I don't work well when tired. I will need this patience when I am most susceptible, in the late hours. But, I also pray for patience for the next several decades. I know being not only a loving, but patient father will be needed over my child's lifetime. I know my parents patience was tested by me. I know I was difficult at times, but their patience has lasted 36 years so far, and now I can appreciate them even more during the approach to my becoming a father.
3. Patience. Patience for myself. I am my worst critic. I have been more difficult on myself than any other person possible. I know I will not do everything correct as a father. I'm sure, no father but the Father has been perfect. I don't plan on being the second. But, when I feel like I have failed, I need to be patient with myself.
These things I pray for, and will commit to this day. I look to my family, friends and wife for support. These tasks will not be easy, but I have not been more joyous to take on a challenge than I am right now.