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14 Powerful Lessons after 14 Months of Being a Dad

At dinner, my wife was telling a story about her father. When she finished, my little one scooted closer, put her head on my shoulder, and said, “My daddy is this guy right here.

 

NO. WORDS.


Fourteen months ago, I became a first-time father.


Not by traditional means, as my wife and I are unable to have children biologically.


Still, these unfortunate circumstances ultimately led us to our tiny superhero, which is, quite simply, EVERYTHING.

 

I've learned having a child is similar to the plot of Mighty Pups.


You think you are strong and can take on any challenge, but then a meteor crashes through your home, and you are given superpowers.



Here are 14 lessons I’ve learned after 14 months of being a father.


1. Watch Paw Patrol:


14 months ago, a group of talking dogs led by a child who appears to have the same family fortune as Bruce Wayne would not be super appealing.


Now, my little one and I drive to school blasting “It’s Not Going Down Like Thaaaaaaaat,” which is the theme song for the newly released Mighty Pups movie.


You should watch it.



 

2. Time is more precious than you think:


As a dad, making the most of your time with your children is essential because they grow up so quickly.

 

When reflecting, 14 months feels like 14 seconds.


Be present.

 

3. Love is more potent than anything you can buy on Amazon:


I was recently knocked out with a stomach virus, requiring two days of quarantine.


On day 2, my little one said, “Daddy, will you be better tomorrow? I hope you are so I can give you a hug.

 

NO. WORDS.


4. Patience is everything:


Parenting requires patience, as children often test boundaries and make mistakes. Maintaining a calm and understanding approach is critical.

 

How you respond to them will shape how they react to the world.

 

5. Foster creativity:


Encourage your child's creativity through art, music, and imaginative play.


Yesterday, I pretended to have a conversation with a peacock, raccoon, and squirrel about driving a scooter to the moon.

 

It was one small step for humankind.




6. Your child will become a version of you:


Children often imitate their parents' behavior, so being a positive role model regarding attitude, respect, and responsibility is crucial.

 

Legacy is which version of you they become.

 

7. Celebrate achievements:


Acknowledge and celebrate your child's accomplishments, no matter how small, to boost their self-esteem and motivation.

 

You would have thought Tom Brady unretired the way we celebrated going #2 in the toilet.



8. Commit to balancing work and family:


Finding a balance between your professional and family commitments is crucial for maintaining a harmonious and fulfilling life.

 

If it weren’t for Speak4MC, I am not sure how I would have navigated some of the outside pressures of our situation.


Find work that provides balance.



9. Support their passions:


Encourage and support your child's interests and passions, allowing them to explore their talents and potential.

 

I never would have thought I would spend my Friday night at a dance recital watching 2-year-olds do the two-step.


It was freaking awesome.



10. Embrace not knowing:


Accept that you may make mistakes as a parent, but remember that it is all part of the learning experience.

 

The only wasted parenting mistake is the one you refuse to learn from.


11. Encourage communication:


Encourage open and honest communication, allowing your child to express their thoughts and feelings without judgment.

 

If the phrases “let’s talk about it,” “break it down for me,” “help me understand,” “let’s chat about what happened,” “what’s going on,” etc., aren’t being used daily, start today.


12. Teach empathy:


Help your child develop empathy by teaching them to understand and consider the feelings and perspectives of others.

 

The only way to teach it is to model it.




13. Teach resilience:


Teach your child to bounce back from setbacks, teaching them that failure is an opportunity to learn and grow.

 

How we respond to failure as children lays the groundwork for who we will ultimately become as adults.


14. Love unconditionally:


Love your child unconditionally, letting them know they are cherished and accepted.

 

They love you more than words can say. Love them back.




Disclaimer


*Statements on this blog reflect the author's personal opinions and do not represent any other person, company, or organization. The purpose of this blog is general knowledge and to bring awareness to tools, techniques, people, and organizations that bring about positive change. The reader is strongly encouraged to perform independent research about the topics discussed.


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