Sunday, January 1, 2012

DAD

A special New Year's guest post from Scott...

I have been thinking a lot about the word "Dad" and all that it represents lately.  For starters, since Nov 9th of this year I have become known as one.  Secondly, we just celebrated my own Dad's 3 year anniversary of him leaving us for a much bigger, brighter, and I know better place for him. For the last 40+ years of my life I have learned what I thought the word meant to me. 

One of my Dad's favorite past times...fishing.
It began to define itself in my early teens with my Dad.  My Dad was not what you would call an affectionate communicator.  He led by his actions more than his words.  Even though at times I wanted to hear the fatherly advice on things or the words of encouragement and acknowledgment, I now realize he taught me more than I could have imagined.  He taught me the meaning of hard work and what this will get you in your life, he taught me to always be honest no matter the outcome, and most of all he laid down a wonderful foundation for being a Dad.  
My mom and dad.
My Dad worked his entire life to provide for his family. He believed this was his #1 responsibility as a Dad and a husband.  He did this to perfection for seven kids and wife, my Mom.  We always had what we needed and most of the time what we wanted. We took wonderful vacations across the US and even had a cabin in the mountains to enjoy.  My Mom and Dad always made sure none of the 7 kids was singled out and we always had equal share.  Something I now admire and hope to achieve as our family expands (no, not any time soon!).  My favorite advice my Dad ever gave to me was to never settle and find something you love.  No matter what that was, do what makes you happy. He never pushed anything on us growing up and always supported what we wanted to do. This became very clear to me when in college I told my Mom and Dad that I wanted to become an actor.  I am sure this thrilled him as all that money was going towards a degree and I want to act.  As I mentioned, my Dad was not a very touchy-feely guy. He spoke his mind and would not shy away from telling you what he thought.  Here is the funny thing about all that, my Dad rarely missed one of my plays in college.  In fact he came to several of them and it was the first time I ever heard my Dad tell me he was proud of me.  For a sensitive kid like me, to hear this from his Dad was beyond words. More than that, it showed me another side of what it means to be a Dad.  The side that teaches you to open your mind and self to new things even though at first you might not think it's possible.  I miss my Dad every day for so many reasons and on Nov 9th, 2011 I really understood why, as this was the day my son Noah was born.
The day my life changed.
This is the day when the, "Oh Shit" moment came as I stood holding this little 7lb. 10oz. baby boy. I was now a Dad.  I was now responsible for everything that comes with the title "Dad"!  What exactly does that mean? I thought I knew coming into his birth, however I am continuously surprised every day.  You see I am on the older side of being a Dad, my beautiful mother-in-law likes to give me trouble about this truth, and therefore I have seen many examples of what it means from family and friends to be a Dad.  Each one of them have given me great insight into the meaning of the word and some examples I will replicate and some that I won't. My Dad gave me a wonderful foundation to build from and luckily for me I married into an incredible family and father-in-law.  He can't replace my Dad, nor would he ever want to, but he has been such a blessing to have for guidance and advice when needed.  Plus, he is a wonderful golfer so I know Noah has a better teacher in this area than his Dad. 
Noah's lucky to have these two as Grandparents.
It's been almost 8 weeks since my little boy was born and the one thing I know is I can't and won't be able to put into words the incredible love I have for him.  It's the most amazing, overwhelming, intense love that I have ever felt in my life.  Every Dad I spoke to during our pregnancy told me, "it's the best thing that ever happened to me," having their child.  I thought I had some idea of what that meant and felt like and I now understand I could not have.  No one can express, to me at least, this feeling.  The feeling I get when he is sleeping on my chest and looks so angelic, or the feeling I get when I feed him the bottle and he stares at me with this look of unconditional love, or the feeling I get when he sits on my lap and we play and he flashes his brilliant smile, but most of all no one could ever express the feeling I get when he is just falling asleep in my arms and he is making these indescribable little faces and even flashes a smile every now and then. I know.. I know.. it's just gas, but I am sorry they will never be gas smiles to me, they will always be smiles for his Dad!
The best Christmas gift I have ever received, little Noah.
I can't end this post without giving thanks and love to my beautiful, amazing wife Steph.  She not only was a rock star through the entire pregnancy with Noah, she has been such an amazing mother to watch with him. She is so incredible to him and with everything she has to do while I am at work she somehow continues to find time and strength to make me feel special and make time for us as a couple.  This reminds me of the night I met Stephanie when I walked up the stairs at Crick and Kyle's house to lay my eyes on the most beautiful women I have ever seen sitting with precious Kayla on the floor.  Right then, our future flashed before me as I could see her as the mother of my children before ever knowing her.  My Dad knew this as well before I ever did as a few weeks before he passed away, he was meeting Stephanie for the 1st time at Thanksgiving and while we were preparing to give thanks for everything, I mentioned something to the affect that Steph was not yet a part of the family. He put his hand onto mine and leaned into me and said, "Oh yes she is"! That memory, and those words, I cherish daily as that was the last day I saw my Dad alive and will never forget how much that meant to me.  Seems this time his words taught me what it means to be a Dad.
Ringing in 2012 with my beautiful wife.

3 comments:

LC said...

Oh Scott...what a sweet post. Parenthood is such a beautiful and wonderful gift. We are only 7.5 months in and let me tell you, it gets better and better everyday. Just when I think that I cannot love him anymore, it happens. You seem to be doing great in the Daddy role! Congrats again to you and Steph! Noah is just adorable!

Unmatched_in_Manhattan said...

Aw Scott! You are such a great husband and dad! Steph and Noah are so lucky to have you.

Can't wait to see you guys soon!!

xoxo

Kristina said...

Why'd you have to go and make cry.

Jezzzz.