Of Having And Being: Dad


I’m Dad to two young kids.  A boy and a girl, both younger than 10.  There are several things that I think I’d like to improve on, but then again, there are a number of things I excel at.

With that said, I wanna relate a story that came un-summened to my mind just now as I’m working at organizing mind bendingly boring numbers.

I grew up in Minnesota; land of 10,000 lakes.  Literally, there are more than 10,000 lakes in that place; it’s crazy.  Anyway, we often would visit these lakes in the summer, camp and stuff.  Our weekends were FILLED with camping and fishing and turtle catching and fires and …. and stuff.

I remember going to a lake that I hadn’t remembered being at before.  Of course, later it would come to be a favorite spot of ours.  But that day, THAT day, it was new.  Anyway, so, dad and my brother and I drove to this lake, what, 30 minutes from  home, and we just kinda looked around.  Great location, easy to get to, close to a store and fed by a creek.  A creek.

We walked down to that creek and walked over a bridge.  A small bridge to be sure, no more than 8 feet across and but a yard high.  A foot bridge only, nothing but people and bikes could cross.  And as we walked over that bridge we saw a creek that fed that lake FULL of fish.  And when I say full, I mean full.  Fish were fishing.  The amount of fish in that water was amazing.  And we didn’t have our poles.

I begged dad to drive all the way home, pick ’em up and drive back.  It would be SO awesome to fish that creek!

I could see it in his eyes.  He wanted too, I KNOW he did.  But he just couldn’t justify the 30 minute drive home followed by another 30 minute drive back just to fish.  Those fish lived for another day and I was left fishless.

We didn’t do anything that day.  e just drove home later and ….. and hung out.  Shit, we may have been LOOKING for stuff to do when we got back, I don’t know.  I think that whole day stuck with me.

I’ll go wildly out of my way just to let the kids “fish”.

It won’t make sense.  I’ve driven back home, 20 minutes each way, just so that my kid would have his “lovie” at day care.  I’ve made that same drive to bring in a valentine day card for a teacher.

That’s the thing about being a parent.  My folks did things and I turned out like I am.  I am happy with me.  Should I change what they did?  And if I do, do I risk raising my kids so they grow up to be not like me?

Huh.

 

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2 comments
  1. Actually I think Minnesota has over 15,000 lakes officially! There’s a Calvin and Hobbes strip where Calvin’s dad is out late looking for Hobbes outside and says “my dad would never do anything like this.” I’ve had the same thoughts at times, though I think our parents probably did a lot more than their parents did. I also remember once in High School we had a debate tournament in Huron, South Dakota, at least two and a half hours from Sioux Falls. I missed the morning bus to the tournament (they called, but my mom was half asleep and said I’d left!) I was upset (in tenth grade) but my dad said “Get dressed, I’ll drive you there.” He drove me there, dropped me off and then headed home. I only missed the first round (which was our only loss as my debate partner had tried to do both roles – offense and defense), but hey – he drove over five hours on a Saturday morning for me. I try to remember that too!

    • pino said:

      Minnesota has over 15,000 lakes officially!

      There’s a funny story about my brother and his drill sergeant in boot camp regarding how many lakes there are in minnesota.

      he drove over five hours on a Saturday morning for me. I try to remember that too!

      THAT’S what I’m talkin’ about!

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