Monday, May 24, 2010

You're a Good Dad

Chauntel and Makayla have been going to the Rec Center on Monday nights to the Tai Kwon Do class for a while now, so Monday nights have become the boys' night to do boy stuff. It's been fun to hang out and we'll usually jump on the trampoline, wrestle in the front room, or just throw balls at each other and try to make each other fall over. It's great to do manly things on Monday nights. Our Family night has switched to Thursdays for the time being. Tonight, while we were jumping on the trampoline, we hear the infamous tune of the ice cream truck and Isaac just completely froze on the trampoline and his eyes shot wide open as he listened. With all the excitement of a 6 year old he just yelled "Ice Cream Truck!" and began to run through the house and the front door. Jackson and I followed. I ran inside and got some money, and we headed out the front door to find it. As we started to run down the street, I noticed that Jackson's shoes were untied. I told him to hold on and I began to tie them up for him. As I was tying his shoes, Jackson reached down, patted me on the back and said, "You're a good Dad" and then followed it up with his signature grin that completely will melt your inerds.

I put the kids to bed tonight and gave them each hugs and a kiss like I do most every night, and Jackson's words are still with me. Everyday I work at my office to try and grow our business to bring as much success to our family as I can. I teach Seminary and have been told that I do a good job at that. I play ball twice a week to try to stay in shape and make Gabe Trinidad eat his words when he is guarding me and says, "no way" when I throw up a shot when he doesn't think there's a chance of it going in the hoop. I'm pretty passionate about a lot of things, as my wife will attest to. But the something that I have learned that brings me the most joy in my life are the relationships that I have. I have learned that no matter if our business is doing great, I am in the best shape of my life, but my relationship with my wife is not as great as it could be, I feel anything but successful and completely vulnerable. On the other hand, if times are hard and I may be facing immense challenges in whatever aspect of my life, if I feel as if she knows I am doing my best to serve her and help her understand how much she means to me, I feel bullet proof. Her words of encouragement can mean more to me than anything else.

The same holds true with my children. I hope that I will always be able to hear from them that I am a "good Dad". Many nights Chauntel and I have stayed up late talking about each of them and how in the world we should handle whatever the situation of the day is. Being a Dad is one of, if not, THE hardest thing that I have ever attempted. (I did one time try to sign in at what I thought was an orthopedic doctor for my knee, but it turned out to be a gynecologist. That was pretty hard to convince them it was a mistake. The doctor happened to walk out at that very moment, and I looked at him and said, "So - you don't know anything about knees, huh?") It has been said that no other success can compensate for failure in the home. I hope to always remember to put my family first; to have my wife know that she will always be first to me, and our kids will feel from Dad that he is always available to them. If it ever feels otherwise to them, I pray that I will be able to realize it and fix it right away. When I think of my Dad growing up, I think of him always being in the stands or on the sideline. He always supported us in whatever we were doing. Just being there meant so much to us.

It could have been that we were going to get ice cream as to the reason why Jackson said I was such a good Dad. I hope that it was for other things as well. I bought a painting of the Savior holding a little boy's hand, walking across a field not too long ago. The picture helps me remember my responsibility as a Dad. I want to hold my Kaylagirl and boys' hands through life and hopefully teach them by example all that our Heavenly Father expects me to. I can't say enough how grateful I am for our family that He has entrusted us with. I plead every day for guidance to know what and how to do what I am supposed to.

We never did find the ice cream truck. We made at least four trips to the end of the street as we could hear the ice cream tune going further away from us, hoping for the miracle that it would turn our way. We ended up hitting Mom's stash of fudgsicles and watching TV till bedtime. I also don't know where my $5 is that Isaac had for the ice cream truck.


Niki Carter said...

Great post Jeremy. For the record, we think that you and Chauntel are GREAT parents. You are both so dedicated to your children and have really been "bullet proof" when it comes to dealing with your trials. Thanks for being great friends and great examples.

natallie said...

i'm so glad that chauntel is married to someone so devoted to her and her kids and their happiness. imagine how much greater the world would be if all dad's(mom's) realized it's what we invest in our kids and not the bank that brings the greatest joy and success.

Melissa said...

Who'd have thunk that you would be such a great Dad, huh? :-) You guys are such great parents. I know that smile of Jackson's that you said he gave you and it made me tear up just thinking about it. Life sure has changed since we had children, and it's amazing the perspective that it puts on your life. There is nothing like hearing that my sweet little boy loves me best in the whole wide world.

For the record, I have told several people about you and the gyno, but that story is the best when you tell it!!! I have laughed for 30 minutes straight about that. But things like that are what makes you, you.

Sorry you didn't find the ice cream truck! But it looks like Isaac came out about $5 ahead anyway. hahaha

Love you bro


Dusty and Amy said...

Wow. What a great testimony and an early Father's Day Jackson gave you! You are such a special spirit. I look up to you and Chauntel in so many ways. I am proud to call you my brother and love to feel and see your passion for life and the passion Chanutel and the kids bring too. I too know of that smile of Jackson's. A smile like that is pure and speaks of true love and happiness that only can come from being in a family that walks the talk of the Gospel. I love you all!

Dusty Rhoads said...

Jeremy, Amy told me to read this post. So glad I did. Awesome. Thanks for your example.