I don't get very personal most of the time on social media. I may share a cute photo of my kids on occasion, but I try not to go too in depth...and, instead, I focus on my art and my business.That said, I truly feel I would be remiss if I didn't share how one good man had affected the lives of four boys from Iowa.
In 1998, I returned home from the St. Croix Triathlon and unexpectedly met my oldest brother at the airport. He was there to inform me that our Dad, who I had spoken with 3 hours prior from the island, had died suddenly. I was 29 years young.
I remember speaking at his funeral. Words I still believe today. Everyone is born with a special purpose or talent. It's up to us to discover that talent or skill, but we all have one. My Dad's special gift was being a father. He was one of the great ones, embedding in all four of his boys the importance of simply being present in your children's lives. Always being willing to set work and deadlines aside for a game of catch or a trip to the lake. Taking that extra few minutes to explain "why" to a young, inquisitive child. And, instilling in us the importance of being intelligent and respectful gentlemen.
I'm very proud of my brothers and how they've continued our Dad's legacy as great Dads themselves. So many parts of parenting are instinctive or reactionary, and without those life experiences we all shared, who knows how things would have turned out.
So, here's to all the Dads in the world. Your kids truly are watching and learning from you at all times. They will take each experience with you as a "how to" for their own parenting adventures in the future. Don't worry about making mistakes, we all make them. But, most importantly, be there! Just show up and spend time with them and let them get to know you. I can speak from experience, that once you're gone, they will miss your knowledge and experience...and the Dad jokes. they will wish for just one more afternoon together.