I wrote my Twin Girls Top 10 about things I needed to do about two weeks ago. It was all in good fun until I got down to number ten. The last item was to be a better husband so my girls will have a good example of how they deserve to be treated. This line of thinking has been stuck in my head for quite a while now. The fact that their idea of what a man should be will come almost entirely from me is beyond scary.
I don't know why setting an example seems to be more critical now with girls than it did with Braden. He is also getting his example from me. I guess it comes from that innate fatherly instinct to protect your little girls. They're not even here yet and I'm already wrapped around their little fingers.
For much of my life I thought I would be the typical Dad as portrayed on TV. I thought I would be the 1950 version of Dad. I would work. I would come home. I would sit in my recliner, drink beer, and watch sports. I didn't need to cook, clean, or do anything else.
Thankfully reality eventually set in. Now I don't even have a recliner.
After work I try to help the best I can. I like to cook actually. I don't think anyone likes to clean, but I help a little. I share the duties with Braden as well. Sometimes I may need to be reminded of what those duties are, but once prodded I can help.
Being an example for the girls is much more than all that though. It is not necessarily about dutifully pulling my share of the load. I can't represent my part in the marriage as the ox that carries the heavy load because he has too. Dad can't be the guy that does all these things out of a sense of duty or worse yet just to stay out of trouble.
I have to be loving above all else. I read a verse from the book of John today where Jesus says, "If you love me, you will obey what I command." My attitude and help around the house must be taken in the same light. I am not being commanded. That is not the point. The point is that if I love Arica, I should want to help her as much as possible. I should show my love through my actions.
I should happily mop the floor.
I should joyfully fold the clothes.
I should rejoice in changing a dirty diaper.
Let me be the first to admit that this type attitude is not easy for me. I'm human. I would rather watch a ballgame than do any of that stuff. And that is why I wrote #10 the way I did. I have a lot of room to improve as a husband. There is always room to improve, and I want to strive towards a more perfect love that can be seen easily by my children.
These are just the things I think about when my mind wanders. I think it's a lot more productive than my pre-children day dreaming of fishing and cold beer.