Just as surely as every mom lets her kids do things that daddy would never approve of (like giving them ice cream even after daddy told them “no peas, no desert!”), fathers similarly do things for their kids that mom probably wouldn’t like. I suspect fathers are even worse offenders, no doubt in part because kids are so enamored of mom that we fathers will do whatever we need to do to reclaim “most favored parental unit” status, if even for a moment.
I’m generally not a fan of forcing/allowing kids to grow up too fast, but that was (silly me!) before I had my own kids and had my life hijacked by Play Dough® and Thomas the Tank Engine®. Now, I can’t wait for my boys to get old enough to go and do things daddy enjoys, such as watch action flicks, play golf and buy a bass boat and go fishing.
As such, this past weekend I was basking in a free moment watching Spider Man— part one I think—when my oldest son (of 3 years) waltzed in and sat down on the couch. Now, I had three choices here:
- Turn the TV off and offer to go do something else, something more age-appropriate, with my son
- Turn the TV to something he would enjoy, but which would drive me elsewhere in the house, or
- Leave the TV there and let him watch it with me
The fact that I’m even blogging about this is sufficient to tell you of my decision. Yes, we watched Spider-Man and yes it was great. My son actually seemed to enjoy it and I did my best to play off the Green Goblin as some mean guy whom “Spiderman is going to make go away forever.”
It was a great time had by all…no harm no foul.
Until about 1:30 in the morning two days later. I’m lying there in sleepy bliss because my wife got up with the baby the first time and my time had yet to come, when I feel a shifting of the force…or wait…maybe it’s the mattress. Even as I was opening my eyes and sitting up to find out what all the hub-bub (bub) was all about, I knew it my son coming to get in bed with us, something that’s not generally allowed.
I was just about to pick him up and take him back to bed when he says, “Daddy, the green man scares me.”
Crap! There’s not much I could say after that, knowing damn well that it was my fault in the first place. So, I regretfully picked him up and put him between my wife and I where he hovered on my side of the bed the rest of the night poking and prodding my kidneys and buttocks areas looking for fruit snacks and Lord knows what else!
There are people who say I should just relax and enjoy these times in my kids’ lives, but…honestly? I don’t mind being a human bean bag cum nanny most of the time, but sometimes a guy just needs to be a guy—with all the sports watching and throne sitting that entails—without the burden of young minds. Hope springs eternal…