My blog contains a large number of posts. A few are included in various other publications, or as attached stories and chronicles in my emails; many more are found on loose leaves, while some are written carelessly in margins and blank spaces of my notebooks. Of the last sort most are nonsense, now often unintelligible even when legible, or half-remembered fragments. Enjoy responsibly.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Being Dad

Everyone dances best with their most comfortable disguise. Our masks exist to define who we are and how we want to be seen. So when I was finally face to face with my new child that I realized that I did not know who I would be to him. Dad, sure, but how do I define that? What of my personality do I promote or suppress to help guide his development? And will I be able to dance with him?

Immediately drumming through my head is the line, “Be who you desire your children to become.” Well, yes. But as with any parent, I want so much more for him. I want to see him succeed in whatever it is that he chooses to do. Not to fill my own lost dreams or hidden ambitions, but because he wants to. Truly wants to. Above all else, I want him to be happy and content. So I need to be able to portray that at a level competent enough to convince him that it is possible. But I do not know how.

He is almost three weeks old and his personality is starting to develop. His cries are becoming distinct and I hear his future voice in his experimental yelps. I know that these times will pass quickly. I’ll see him quickly grow, learn, and develop. I will not be able to keep up. My masks will eventually fail, I will not dance quickly enough, and he will be on his own. Yet I must try.

The inevitability of the situation is that there is only a short window in which I can make an impact on him. Everything else that he takes from me is the memory of who he believed that I was versus how well his grown self is able to see through me. More than anything else, I do not want to fail him. This fear haunts my soul deeper than anything that has ever touched me. It is as if someone has reached inside of me and taken hold of everything that I am and will only release me once my performance has been weighed.

The entire situation makes me wish that I could be a greater man, one up for this challenge, and someone who knows that they could not fail.

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