“Eli had a rough day today. He’s 19 months old and teething like a maniac. This picture is what it looked like after his nap. I held him in this position for 12 minutes. No idea what he wanted but I knew he was happy in my arms.
I had back surgery 3.5 weeks ago so I can’t pick him up. Laying down would be preferable but this is what the little man wanted today. A comforting snuggle with Dad. It didn’t matter that I had work to do, or had some pain in my back. What mattered is that he felt safe in my arms.
My whole life I wanted to be the best dad I could be when my time came. I couldn’t wait for the day to come where I could hold my toddler’s hand and walk down the street, or into a restaurant (when that was feasible), or just down the hallway to the kitchen.
19 months ago, my life changed. No longer did I have the time, or the desire, to go golfing every weekend. Sure, I miss having the same amount of careless time out with my friends, as I’m sure many of us do. We may be getting older but we’re still young guys at heart, right?
I have laughed harder, smiled more, and cried more over the last 19 months than I had in my first 30 years on this planet. The little guy brings us so much joy, humor, and happiness. 5 out of 7 nights (at least) my wife goes to bed hearing me say ‘he’s just so amazing, and funny. I love him so much.’
She also hears me cry and doubt myself. I want to show him the highest example of what it is to be a person, a fellow human being on this earth. What if I do something wrong, or say something I may regret? What if he doesn’t see the lessons we try to teach so early on? It doesn’t matter. I’m here for him. As a father, as a male role model, as a friend.
By being there for him, I know he will not only succeed in life, but he will be one person others wish they could have been around. No matter what happens each day, I know that by the end of that day Eli and I (and everyone else in his life) will have had great laughs, lots of smiles, and more love than could be given.
This is what life is about. This is what our lives, as fathers, is about. Let’s all do what we can do be better for ourselves so we can be better for our little ones. Hold them and love them and cuddle them every chance you get. These times don’t come as much as we’d like, or need.”
– Brian Gaudet
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