Shoutouts — June 19

Courtesy photo Jerry Lisby with his son, Fox, 4.

Fatherhood worth effort

This is for those men who are undecided about starting a family.

I married later in life and never thought about having kids; wanted to wait until I was in better shape, had more money, traveled more: The typical wall men put up.

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My wife made it clear that I could still go on guy trips, play cards, etc., but I didn’t care about those things anymore. I had a new challenge and a new responsibility to this new little guy who needed me as much as I soon realized I needed him.

I was raised by a single mom and a dad that I didn’t see very often. I now have a chance to raise a son the way it should be done: To help him be a loving, caring, compassionate individual who is responsible, tough and morally strong. Help him become in life whatever makes him happy. Whether he chooses to be a carpenter, artist, athlete, musician, or a cook at Mickey Dees, it will be his choice. To me it doesn’t matter if he is gay or straight, learning disabled or a genius, I just want to give him every opportunity and expose him to life’s great adventures to help him become the best he can be.

Sometimes the negatives outweigh the positives, but it doesn’t matter to me: The worry, the lack of sleep, buying batteries by the truckload, vomit on car trips, the screeching, crying, pooping, the time-outs: It’s all worth it!

My wife and I both love spending time with him and seeing him grow as a person. I want to teach him so many things: How to be assertive, to shake hands like a man, defend himself, hold the door for ladies, appreciate all types of music stand up for what is right even though it may not be popular, be honest no matter what, accept other cultures and have an unending thirst for knowledge.

In the end parenthood is not for everyone. It can be brutal at time, but it is no match for the love a father has for his child; no match for the joy of watching him achieve little life goals, or the little boy hugs, burps and sneaky smile. What could compare to helping a child become a well adjusted adult who contributes to society and makes a difference in someone’s life as I know he has made in mine.