Daddy, here’s a dollar
Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,
People don’t slow down often. I saw a guy cut across a median on the off ramp and slide 3 lanes over. That move motivated, I presume, because he was in a hurry to be somewhere. Likely at a job that he dislikes enough to feel stressed out about. People take chances with things that don’t matter too often. They let little things become the big things in their lives.
I’m avoiding that approach in my life now. Keeping things slow. Not playing it safe, but not pushing things in the wrong areas of my life.
Max, you’re really attached to me at this stage of your life. You shadow my every move. Mimic my actions. You lay down with me everynight and watch Monster Jam on the DVR (your choice). When it ends you ask for baseball now – because you know I like it.
Sometimes you have a hard time with me leaving each morning for work. Out of frustration one morning I tried to explain it to you like a man:
“Son, Daddy has to go to work everyday to make money,” I said.
You just starred at me.
“The food we eat, the clothes we wear, I have to pay for those with money I make. Do you get it?”
“I want you to stay home and play with me,” you said.
“Max, I have to make money to pay for this house.”
A harsh lesson in reality for a 4 year old. I was in a hurry. Cutting across 3 lanes in my relationship with my boy. I regret telling you stuff like that. I’m sure I’ve said similar things to you, Izzy. I can’t explain being an adult to you. In fact, I don’t even want you to know yet that life isn’t easy. We keep things pretty cushy for you kids. But its not always easy.
The Easter bunny visited on Sunday. Among all of the candy and a new toy each, the Bunny also left a little money in each of your baskets.
Your eyes lit up, Max.
You shuffled over to me in your Buzz Lightyear pajamas, turned your eyes to the floor, and spoke softly:
“Daddy, here’s a dollar. Take it to work to pay for this house. Then you can come home and play with me.”
It melted my heart. That’s the beauty of parenthood. You don’t understand that phrase “melted my heart”, until you have kids. Your love for your daddy is special. You gave me your dollar bill. And believed in your little heart, Max, that it would make a difference.
And it did.
I gave you a huge hug and told you I’d stay home and play that day (it was Sunday).
Let’s keep it simple. Slow. And make sure the big things matter most. I don’t work late. I don’t focus my ambition on success outside of our home anymore. I have everything I need in that single dollar.
Someday I’ll explain to you that it’s good for a man to work. That we’re called to work. But for now, I’ll let you believe that your dollar paid for the house.
I love you,
ps. while you say some cute and heart warming things, you also say some “not as heart warming” things to me as we rest at night, like: “Daddy, I’m sorry my butt stinks” and “Daddy, I love beans.” Both recent proclamations.
Song for the day: Keb’Mo’ “Keep It Simple”
Sat: Rode 65 miles
Sun: Ran 12 miles
Tues; Swam 1700 / Ran 5 miles
Wed: Swam 1300 / planned bike