Your role has Expanded.
There’s a stereotype that Dads are not always around, and half as engaged as Mom. In talking with a handful of Dads on our podcast, since the pandemic began, we are finding our duties growing and our arsenal of skills now include more than just Jokes and luscious green lawns…although the Stay-at-Home certainly didn’t hurt us lawn warriors. In case you missed the memo Dad, it’s time to:
Roll up your sleeves and get dirty. If you told me before being a Dad, I’d enjoy changing diapers and it would be one of my favorite times with my son, I’d tell you you’re nuts. With the help of some ska music on Alexa and our son’s love of ceiling fans, we bond more during diaper changes than any other time of day. You just gotta find your way to make even the crappiest of times a bonding moment.
Model authentic masculinity. Since serving in the military, I love vacuuming and seeing those straight lines calms me down. Outside of the soothing effects or the accomplishment of preparing meals each night, I want my son to see me doing those tasks Dads don’t always do…and if I had daughter, I would want her seeing a man doing it as well. We shape our kid’s view of what a “man” looks like. Are you the man you want them to aspire to be or one day marry?
Ask yourself, “Is it worth being away from my family?” My role at work has lots of evening commitments and I have a bad habit of taking on too many extra curriculars. Myself and other Dads we’ve talked to are starting to weigh if that next late night is worth the time away from our families. Well, is it?!?
Embrace Puppy Dog Pals. After brutal war stories from Dads about death by endless loops of Baby Shark and Frozen, I feared this phase of parenting. Early on, I got our son hooked on videos I enjoy like Creed and our go to “babysitter” of Andrew Bird on Youtube. Not long ago we’ve added Puppy Dog Pals into the mix and now that I’ve sat down to watch it, I get just as much joy as our son. Stop fearing what you don’t know and embrace what you learn along the way.
The Dadass Podcast: Matt and Shaun host a podcast about trying to figure out this whole parenting and adulting thing. Shaun a counselor and Matt a new Dad, they talk with guest parents and experts to learn things one conversation and drink at a time. Check it out on Apple Podcasts and Spotify and follow them on Instagram and Facebook…it’s not just for Dads!
Matt Lofy: Matt is a proud husband and father first, Director of Marketing and Community Outreach second with the Westerville Area Chamber and Leadership Westerville. He hosts a podcast, The Dadass Podcast, with his good friend Shaun focused on figuring out this whole parenting and adulting thing…it’s not just for Dads!