In honor of Father’s Day, we turned to our managestaff dads for fatherly words of wisdom and advice. Here are their thoughts on the joys and challenges of parenthood.
What was/is the most challenging part about being a father?
Bruce (Courier): Guiding your children down the right pathway on a consistent basis.
Barry (Director of Risk Management): Not always being able to be there to help when something is wrong or they need help.
Patrick (Vice President): Remembering that I AM her father! I find it very easy to get lost in the simplicity of my daughter, and with only 2 years under her belt she has so many “first time” experiences. I find myself looking to learn from her so it’s challenging sometimes because she teaches me things and sometimes it’s hard to accept when she is right!
Neil (Business Development): Providing a good life for my wife and children.
Do you think fatherhood today is more demanding, less demanding, or about the same than it was for the previous generation?
Bruce: Close to the same but a little more demanding with all the electronic advances.
Barry: I believe it is all relative as time goes, so what may have been a challenge in a previous generation may be different today, but not any more difficult or demanding in perspective. I believe there are more challenges in the current generation, with technology and increased violence, but there are more ways to monitor and handle in the same respect.
Neil: Today with most children fighting to get their way.
Were you ever a stay-at-home dad? If you were, do you wish you worked? If you weren’t, do you wish you took time off from working? Why?
Bruce: Working dad. With more time at home, I could have built a closer relationship with my children. I could have watched them grow on a closer level.
Barry: My children were growing up when I was in the military, so that was not an option in either case. I do wish I could have spent more time with them.
Patrick: I love the time at home with my daughter and in a perfect world I would be a stay-at-home father.
Neil: I was raised to provide, so I always worked. Now I clean, cook, and babysit for my grandkids.
What is the most rewarding part about being a father?
Bruce: Hearing the innocent things kids say and knowing the true meaning of LOVE!
Barry: Watching them grow and develop. Grandchildren…
Patrick: Seeing yourself in your child and the feeling of only wanting the best for them.
Neil: Watching my kids and grandkids succeed!
If you could give one piece of fatherly advice to new dads, what would it be?
Bruce: Do not be afraid to discipline your children fairly! Love ’em to pieces!! In the end, your efforts will be rewarded.
Barry: Patience! And stay as involved in their activities as you can. Some of the smallest things you do may be the fondest memories you and they cherish.
Patrick: Common sense goes a long way…
Neil: Love with all your heart in all you do and all you hold dear. Once you’re gone, your legacy is all you have.
And for our managestaff not-yet-dads, share a favorite memory of your father:
Tanner (Operations): My favorite memories of my father are all the great times we spent building our ’69 Camaro together and then racing it on Friday nights at Firebird Raceway. My dad taught me a lot about patience, mostly by example. I really appreciate everything he taught me, both in business and in life.
Brian ( Marketing): My favorite memories with Dad are all the times we spent camping in the woods as kids. He was always adamant about getting us out of the city and into the “sticks” to teach us how to really live. He always made sure we went off the beaten path in order to camp in the deep woods. We would spend two or three days shooting skeet, fishing in the river for our dinner, and listening to his life lessons/stories by the fire at night. I’ll never forget growing up that way. I think it is something that not too many children get to experience these days. I’m grateful my dad did that for us. It was quality time that will always be priceless to me.
Happy Father’s Day!