4 Unexpected Life Lessons I Learned From Becoming a Father
Strolling with my firstborn son during our regimented late afternoon expedition around the relaxing greeneries of our neighborhood, I never would have thought how much I’ve changed since I became a father. While I’m not very vocal about it, I have within me the urge to do my best for my children.
Though my son has become a little naughty and defiant (in an adoring and innocent kind of way) I would always find him needing guidance as he explores the world surrounding him. The look in his eyes alone — simple and without pretensions — could convey the most genuine of feelings; his tears would make me tremble, his laughter would dispel any void and his hug could numb my weariness.
Indeed there are things one can discover upon himself once an inevitable chapter of his life unfolds, and being a parent is one of them.
As I see my life then, becoming a father has taught me:
To bring out the best in me
Being imperfect that I am, I have a low tolerance when it comes to children. But having my own, however, has changed my attitude towards them.
Truly, in the eyes of a parent, their child is the most treasured blessings in this world. My once intolerance has been replaced with understanding, my precariousness has succumbed to being responsible, and my selfishness has surrendered to genuine concern. Not only did I have developed these attitudes around my children, but I have also learned to implement them in other areas of my life.
To be careful of my actions
Most of the time, I am fast with my actions without thinking of the consequences. But my fatherhood has taught me to be more careful of my acts. For instance, for the sole purpose of satisfying my ego — let alone the expectations of others — I would allow myself to be engaged in uncompromising situations (i.e., senseless fights, frenetic escapades, immoral practices); but crooning my son as he lay his needing arms around me, I realized that I’ve been too precarious and selfish with my previous acts. With this I have learned to be prudent of my actions: relying no more on the urge, praise, or deprecation of others.
Sense of direction
In the sea of life, I have wandered aimlessly, neither with purpose or destination. While having a partner gave the sense, it was not enough. But my son has made me see, a road among a cragged path — one of purpose, meaning, and opportunity.
Being a father has prompted me to alleviate myself from my current lot, to look at possibilities where I can improve. My son’s presence has prompted me to explore ways for a better life, for him to enjoy as he journey through life.
As I adore this little person that has altered my life in a major way, I can’t help but appreciate the value and beauty of life. Oftentimes, I am baffled at why some people engage themselves in activities that are destructive of life. Looking at the innocence of my son I have asked myself: what has become of man that he evolved into destroying his own brethren.
Seeing the need in the eyes of my son, I have learned to recognize such a look in the eyes of others. It’s no wonder it is said that we should help one another — for we all share this blessing called life.
I know there is much to learn as I go on with this journey, and there’s much need for surrender in the name of the well-being of my son. Fate has its way to change us for the better; however, it is up to us to see this purpose. As for me, being a father has made me see things important in life. And for this, I am very thankful for this new dimension of my existence.