Father’s Day: a note


By Andrew Taylor-Troutman 

The Saturday before Father’s Day, I drove past a guy standing in his front yard with a chubby little baby strapped to his chest. This dad held a two-by-four in one hand and a hammer in the other. There were no construction projects in sight, only an expanse of green grass that needed mowing.

My children are in school now, but I recall how those baby-carrying devices freed your hands for a task. I also remember the mind-numbing fatigue of caring for a baby that caused me to stride purposefully into a room and utterly forget what I intended to do. I imagine that dad had a similar moment of amnesia from sleeplessness. Perhaps he briefly considered abandoning his home repair project and cutting his grass with hammer and board.

To him (and any other exhausted father or mother out there), let me say that the ancient wisdom is true: this too shall pass. You will sleep again for eight hours in a row, glory be. You will resume your normal activities, like mowing the lawn or building a back deck. What’s more, your life will be immeasurably fuller, funnier, quirkier, and more joyful because of the things you forgot and chores you didn’t do while you were snuggling, soothing, and singing to your little one. Fatherhood has reshaped my priorities and also given me a healthy ability to laugh at myself.

I think that guy in the yard had some concept of this grace, for as I drove past, I caught his eye, and instead of looking dazed, concerned, or embarrassed about his unexplainable situation, he shrugged and smiled, suggesting the holy humility that make for a great dad.

Andrew Taylor-Troutman is the proud father of three children and pastor of Chapel in the Pines Presbyterian Church.

-Andrew Taylor-Troutman (taylortroutman@yahoo.com)

Guest columns are solely the writer’s opinion on a subject or subjects. The opinions expressed in a guest column are not the position of The Local Reporter, but rather the position of a writer who has taken the time to write out their views or concerns before submitting them to us.

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