I see you.
I see your incredible participation and contribution. The busiest time of our family life. Certainly the most challenging.
This Father’s Day weekend, we transition into a different kind of parenting, as we graduate one of our daughters. It’s all a lot. Very much, a lot.
Three teenage girls. Uber driving for kids’ jobs and extracurriculars that blows our socks off. And you have your own professional path too, attending all those parties and events, hee hee, I mean meetings, meetings, organization, people management, emerg shift, OR days and all that other fun stuff you drive away to every day.
I see that you pick up the girls from their dance classes even though you’ve been to town twice in the day already. I see that you’ll fit in a chess game on an overly scheduled day. Or stop for a minute to stare into my eyes and connect.
I see how you’re a magnet for babies, still. Four kids yourself. Oodles of babies delivered through your hands. Many babies seen in emerg still. You are still the first to play with the babies. Adorable.
I see how you pay attention to the crowd when you speak. Say what you mean, have something to say. Passionate about your topic, without overwhelming the emotion of the crowd. You’re lovely to listen to.
I see how you bite your tongue, and don’t make a smart remark, when you see one of the kids not get a math concept the first time. Repeat. Repeat it a different way. Take a deep breath. Repeat again.
I see how you stop to look into the kids’ eyes and ask them how they’re doing, in your way: “Wazzup?” Or pay to play, as you say. Take them out for breakfast, coffee, lunch…where the real discussions flow and details are divulged.
I see how you spend oodles of time playing chess with your son, not making it easy for him (unless you’re tired 😉 I see how you to stop in the middle of a busy day to kick the ball, throw the ball, bring the kids’ bikes in the back of the truck so they can bike down the road.
I see how you keep finances in order, always have a plan, always anticipate, always work to keep it organized.
I see how, even after night shifts, you head to the sink to wash dishes or tidy the kitchen, or some other job that has been assigned to a child. I insist you don’t need to take that on, because you should be sleeping or recouping somehow, but you help anyway.
I see how you play with the puppy, enjoy the eager wagging tail wanting more more more. (Deep down, I know you love the chickens too).
I see how you include the kids in every part of your life, your interests, your work, our long term planning. You teach Broadway songs in the truck, teach baseball and football and basketball as you watch together, you explain the front line approach to suicidal ideation, or managing shoulder dislocations, or choice of needle gauges for IVs, or…mini medical residencies for the high school student.
I see how you spend an hour each week relaying your understanding of Canadian history. How you sprinkle discussions on American political analysis, logical analysis, economics, and scripture passages through any day. The kids are a wealth of knowledge because of it.
I see how you spend time on your days off, chainsawing and snipping, sharpening chains and creating solar dryers, transporting big stuff I can’t, and empty the garbage, deliver the garbage, bring recyclables to the recycling center. Always more garbage.
I see how you fill my tank, without me knowing…actually I didn’t see this for years. Really it was just always full. Or when you’d go to the bank, you’d fill my wallet too.
I see how you spend a day a month with each of the kids discussing their finances. Keeping track of their charitable donations and savings and investments and expenditures. That’s a part time job in itself.
I see how you’re emotionally spent, all those tough work stories, then come home to manage interpersonal struggles with the kids or be attentive with me.
I see you. And I am beyond thankful…