Do you want to be a dad?

Here's my 20 minute run down of thoughts about being a dad.

The bad:
Cleaning a poopy diaper for the 4th time in 30 minutes.
Arriving to work 10 minutes late and realizing that you have some poop on your shirt.
Tripping over their toys for the 1000th time.
Realizing you bought all of those toys.
Struggling to keep your cool after the 10th time your child has come out of bed when he's supposed to be asleep.
Answering "why?" for the 100th time today (I usually don't mind doing this, but sometimes answers allude me or I'm just too darn tired..."Why?").
Wishing I had my evenings back.
Rocking a sick child back to sleep at 2 AM... and 4, and 6.
Worried beyond compare when your children disappear out of the backyard...they were found holding hands, walking around the block to retrieve a Frisbee thrown over the fence.

The good:
Coming home from work to a chorus of "DADDY!!!" with big hugs from all your kids.
Finding an excuse to play with toys you hadn't played with in 20 years.
Having your son fall asleep in your arms.
Getting a sweet kiss from your daughter.
Having your values and virtues tested and actualized in real time (your children are a reflection of yours, so its pretty obvious).
Seeing pure joy on your child's face.
Learning how to balance your time equally between family and work.
Realizing that life is not ending with children...its actually a lot of fun.

There's no question I'm happy I had children. They can be trying at times, but I'm quickly realizing that the biggest issues I have with fatherhood usually stem from failures on my part to live rationally. If anything, they challenge me to be a better person. And this, along with their unconditional love, are two of the greatest things that come with being a dad.


  1. I'm right there with you on the bad especially on the getting out of bed when they're supposed to be asleep.

    As for the good, I think one of the best parts is witnessing the pride of an accomplishment hard won. Like when my oldest daughter comes running saying, "Look I can read these words!" Another is the reaction when you say, yes to something they are sure you will reject. "Daddy, can we play outside in the rain?" Or all the laughter, they really can be funny little people.

  2. My "the bad" is almost completely different than yours, but "the good" is about the same.

    I don't know how old your children are, but one thing you didn't mention is getting to see conceptualization at its beginnings. It's been a particular delight to see them actually doing differentiation and integration as they try to pigeonhole some new information or object.

    And causation, too. They're little causal detectives.

    (I'm not saying that they're useful inductively or anything. These epistemological developments were unexpected gravy. The main course is decidedly the joy they bring to my life.)

  3. Thanks Kevin and Bill. Ah yes, I barely scratched the surface with the good and you both came up with further great examples. With an almost 4 year old, a 2 year old, and a 3 month old, I'm really appreciating how fast their little brains are growing, going from zero to 10 billion miles an hour in just 4 years. Wow!