To Parent or Not to Parent…

Some guys don’t think they want to be a dad. Maybe it’s because they’re not sure they have what it takes to be a parent…the time, the attention, the patience, the commitment. Maybe it’s because they’re not sure they want to give the time, the attention, the patience, the commitment. To be honest, those were all the reasons I didn’t want to be a mom until I became one.

When we were dating, Tyson and I discussed our shared view on not having kids. We were both older (like real old…I was 29, he was 33) and very set in our independent ways. Kids did not fit in the vision we had for our future together of basically continuing doing whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted.

Fast-forward 7 years and 2 kids later. This man was meant to be a dad. I know there are things that he misses about being kid-free, but when watching him with his children it’s easy to see he was made to be a dad.

Being a dad to a strong-willed, independent, opinionated little girl is not for the faint of heart. Tyson was made to be Josie’s Daddy. He is firm when he needs to be and the biggest pushover the rest of the time. When it comes to putting the kids to bed, Tyson is the parent that actually enforces a consistent, appropriate bedtime. However, as soon as that little girl comes walking down the hallway wanting to cuddle with Daddy and watch the football or basketball game with him, the word “No” is missing from his vocabulary.

Then there’s Moses. If there was ever a man designed to be a dad to a child with special needs, it was Tyson. Not because he works him overtime in his therapy or because he dismisses the fact that he has Down syndrome. It’s because Tyson looks at Moses and sees his son for who he is and just simply loves him. He expects out of Moses what he knows he can do and pushes him just the right amount. Tyson makes him do the correct signs for “eat” and “drink” and “thank you” during meals before he gives him something to eat or drink. Me? All Moses has to do is look at me, smile; and sign “more” and I’ll give him as many crackers as his little heart and belly desires. You don’t want to sign “all done”? Not a problem, baby boy!

It wasn’t on my mind at the time, but when I married Tyson, I married the perfect father for our children. He’s going to shape Josie into a well-rounded, respectful young woman and teach her what it looks like for a man to love and respect his partner in life. He’s going to do whatever it is that Moses will need to reach his full potential and be there for him every step of the way.

As for me, he’s going to fill my days with joy and happiness as I watch him be the best Daddy to our children that he can be.

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