Fatherhood… I never truly understood what it means to be a child until I became a father. I never truly understood how my father used to look at me with a smile until I looked at my daughter with a smile. My daughter and I went on a walk today around the neighborhood. It was just great, really! Watching my daughter helped me to realize what fatherhood really is… it is seeing the things that your children can’t see and guiding them safely and lovingly through life. How did I come to that conclusion?
While walking with my daughter, she was so excited. She wanted to pick the flowers. She said, “Daddy, picking the flowers!”. She was excited and happy to see the butterflies (she calls them “fire flies”). She said, “Daddy, look. The fire flies.” She pointed out the trees to me. She said, “Daddy, look. The trees.” She was wearing a hat, which kept getting blown off, because the wind was blowing strong. I told her about the sky and the clouds. I showed her what an Egret was. We saw several of them along the way. It was lots of fun. While it was fun for her, and also fun for me, what was I doing? I was not only interacting with her, but I was also looking around us the whole time. Every time I heard a car, I looked around. Every time I thought that a neighbor’s dog may rush us, I looked around, and held her hand tight. My mind was always on her safety, and she was oblivious to it. My daughter trusted me completely. As long as she was with daddy, she was safe. Being a child means to be able to live, explore and learn without fear, without anxiety. This can only truly be accomplished as a result of trust in someone who you know loves you. In my case, I am that someone. I am, “Daddy”. I take on the worry, and the danger, and the possibility, and make it seem like it doesn’t exist. I am like a magician that makes these things disappear right in front of my daughters eyes. She wouldn’t even know.
To be honest, I enjoy being that person who makes my daughter feel safe and happy. Being a father is what that means. Now I look at my daughter with a smile, one that makes her know that daddy is near and everything is alright. All fathers have the responsibility of making this a reality for their children. Not all fathers do this, sadly. Yet, I hope that anyone reading this would think of their own children and how they interact with them. Our job is to keep them safe and secure until they can do it for themselves. This too makes me wonder of how God must think of us. Those of us who are his children must always realize that He is with us. Because He is with us, we have nothing to fear. We should not worry about anything. We should believe that He is keeping all the danger away from us. Maybe this is what Christ meant when He said:
(Matthew 18:3) 3And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
I thank God that I can see Him in my experience with my daughter, and that that experience helps me to be a better person, a better man. I hope that my experience can help someone else who is wondering what being a parent is, or how they can be a better parent. Thanks for reading.