Tag Archives: Fatherhood

My 2 year old Picasso – Bug colors the wall

Bug's ArtworkWell, it’s happened. Something I thought had the chance of occurring but I was hoping I might be able to avoid. Bug has now drawn and colored on the wall. It happened the other night in just a blink of an eye, but none the less it occurred, in all it’s black ink pen and green crayon colored glory! (I swear, back turned 15 second, 20 tops!)
I’ve had a hard time deciding how I wanted to handle it. Of course, initially I rushed over to her, told her no, grabbed the crayon (pen was on the ground already) and proceeded to point to the wall where the offense had occurred and tell her no, she doesn’t color on the wall. My initial internal reaction was to be harsher but I quickly realized it’s not her fault. Before this moment she didn’t know she shouldn’t draw on the wall. She just knows Daddy praises her when she draws and colors on paper.  So naturally, why wouldn’t she want to do it on something bigger?  Fortunately since the other night there has been no repeats, and she has had chances, but has opted to come sit in Daddy’s lap and help highlight his notes, or write down her own opinions.
My biggest debate on this is how do I react or handle it when it happens again? Yes I said when, not if. If she’s anything like her Daddy it’ll happen again. There is still a drawing I did when I was around 3 on the inside of one of my Granny’s doors that she still talks about to this day. So what do I do? I want to be sure she knows she’s doing wrong and I want to discourage the behavior, but not to the extent that I risk taking away any enjoyment she has in drawing or coloring (self admitted selfishness on my part here too). Its something as a parent I knew I’d eventually face, and had yet until now. And now that I’m faced with it, I’m at a bit of a loss as the course of action I want to take. I guess I have until next time to sit and stew on it, between now and then though, hopefully I can keep my mini Picasso to work solely in the paper medium, and avoid drywall.

Below:  The aforementioned artwork of yours truly at a much younger and more innocent age.


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Standing On My Head

A question was presented by someone I follow on Twitter today (@bradbig) that got me thinking, and made me want to do a quick post about it.  He asked “What’s something your parents used to say to you as a child you said you’d never say, but find yourself saying all the time?”  Well this one is an immediate answer for me, partially because I make myself cringe every time I catch myself doing it.  The statement in question: “Standing on my head.”

While growing up, one thing that used to get on my nerves, and drive me crazy, especially the older I got, was when my mother would use the phrase “Standing on my head” to answer a question I posed.  I can admit that this answer was typically given to a question that had a somewhat obvious answer such as “What are you doing” but typically that was meant as a conversation starter, not so much as actually question.  It used to drive me crazy when I got that response, and it was one of the first things that ever had me think to myself “I won’t do that when I’m a parent.”  I might have actually said it out loud on occasion that I was in fact never going to use that statement, as it drove me insane being on the opposing end of it.

Well guess what?  I’m using the statement in the exact same manner my Mom used to.  Doesn’t matter what I’m doing, if the oldest or my son ask me a question, such as “What ya doing” and its blatantly obvious, I will in fact answer with “What’s it look like, standing on my head.”  And every time, a small part of my inner child dies as it curls up in a corner and weeps over me using the dreaded phrase.

So what about you?  What’s a phrase you swore as a child you’d never say to your own children that you find yourself saying all the time?

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That’s all that matters

Okay, so this is something that I have written and rewritten a few times, but have decided today to finally post. Almost a month ago, Bug had surgery. Nothing major mind you. Something kids everywhere have done nearly every day. She had tubes put in her ears and ended up having her adenoids removed. Today she had her checkup and the doctor said she’s healed quicker than expected, and just being around her now, you can tell a major difference in her speech, walking, and overall behavior, but the experience up to this was, well somewhat rattling for ole Dad.

Up front, you have to understand, it seems like for one reason or another, we’ve been taking Bug to see a doctor, or she needed to see one since she was born. Fortunately, its never been anything major, but it’s been enough to keep me on edge, and every time something else comes up, it puts me right back there again.

To start it all off, Bug was 3 weeks, almost a month early. What felt like the entire pregnancy there seemed to always be something going on, to the point where there were a few times I was nervous going to the doctor because I was worried we wouldn’t get good news (and I’m proud to say, I only missed 1 doctors appointment the entire pregnancy!) Part of this is where she gets her nickname from me. When she was born, she was 6lbs 6oz. When we left the hospital she was down to 6lbs, 3oz. She wasn’t tiny tiny, but to me she was still little, she was my little Bug.

The next event came the same week as her four month check up. She woke up with aBug at UK - 4 mo fever early in the morning, but nothing too severe, we gave her some Tylenol and sent her on her way to my Mother-n-laws, who keeps her during the day while we work. It didn’t take long for me to get a call from my wife that she was taking Bug to the doctor because the fever wasn’t getting any better; it seemed to be getting worse. Fortunately I was able to get there, where they said she was running an extremely high fever and was dehydrated. I stayed in the room as they tried to get an IV into my little girl at ever possible location, all to no avail. Eventually it was decided to transport her to UK Children’s hospital. Once there, they were able to get an IV into her, start getting some fluids into her, and she seemed to start feeling better, only problem was, no one could tell us what the problem was. Once the doctors let us know that we’d be staying at least overnight for observation, I decided to run home and get some stuff for us, while my wife had her parents there with her. The drive is just over an hour one way, so getting home, getting stuff, and coming back equaled a little over 3 hours. When I left, temp was down below 100, everything seemed to be going good. I’m gone 3 hours, within 10 minutes of getting back and I get a phone call asking where I was. Bug’s temp had spiked back up to nearly 105, and my heart dropped! How could I let my little girl down? How could Daddy leave her and not be there is all I kept thinking. We were at the hospital for a total of 3 day, and I never left the building again until it was time to go home.

Since that scare, we’ve fought high fevers, and it seemed like we could never shake some type of ear infection. Finally about 2 months ago we took her to the doctor. She’d been having a little temperature and you could just tell something was wrong. Turned out both ears were infected. So they sent us to an Ears, Nose, and Throat specialist, who after looking at her rather quickly, decided she did in fact need tubes put in her ears.

My initial reaction was a bit of a stomach drop, simply because I didn’t want any type of procedure done on my little girl. I wasn’t really worried about the tubes, because my wife’s nephew had them before, and I had heard of other children having them without problems. The worried feeling was somewhat lifted as the doctor proceeded to explain the procedure to us, she would just be put to sleep with gas. She’d be out of our hands 10 minutes. Once asleep they would look at her adenoids and if they were enlarged, they’d go ahead and remove them. The more he talked, explained the procedure and what was going on with her, the more I felt relieved and realized that this would be very beneficial to Bug, not only health wise, but possibly development wise, and with the constant ear infections, she probably wasn’t hearing as well as as she could.

Then the day came. We had to arrive and the surgery center just after 6am, with a littleBug and I before surgery girl, who was relatively happy for being up so early, and not being able to have anything to drink yet. I was nervous to say the least, but keeping it together and just thinking it’ll be quick, and she’ll feel so much better for it. Then came the moment that I felt my stomach drop again. As they took us back to help put her in her gown and get things prepped, they let us know that not only were they putting her out by IV (not gas) but that the procedure would be around 45 minutes (not the 10 minutes we were told). As the nurse was telling us all this, asking the typical questions about family history, I have no doubt my face was pale white. I was already having anxiety issues about my little girl having a procedure done, but now that everything we had been told the week before has been thrown out the window?! I’m shocked I was able to keep it together, especially at the site of the nurse carrying her away from us as we had to walk back into the waiting room. For the next hour, I just kept thinking how the nurse just kind of took her that I didn’t get to give my baby girl a kiss or tell her I love her; they just swooped in and took her!

Finally, once our name was called to come back, we were able to talk to the doctor, who said everything went fine, tubes were in, and that they did take her adenoid out as they were blocking 70% of her passageway. At this point, my thought patterns changed. I just thought “70%?! My baby had to have been miserable!”

Now a month later, she’s checked out with flying colors! The doctor said she’s healed much quicker than expected, everything looks good, plus my skinny minny has gained a pound and an inch since she went in for surgery! Ultimately as long as she’s happy and healthy all the torture and stress Daddy has to endure for her is fine, and bottom line, her being happy and healthy is all that matters.

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Random Leg Licking!!

No idea why she started this, but in the car yesterday I looked back, and Bug was licking her leg!! Absolutely no idea why she started this or why she was doing it and fortunately she hasn’t repeated it.  She did however have no problem posing and repeating the action so I could snap a few pictures of the said behavior.  She has been absolutely fascinated with her tongue lately, so I pass it off as that more then anything else.  Can’t help but smile at it though….

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Canaan turns 4

Today is my son’s birthday.  I don’t get to see him or give him a birthday hug, forn501461341_43492_1594 another three days, I’m hoping to get a phone call with him late, but he’s sick and its up to his mother and how he’s feeling if I get to.

He is my first and only son.  He’s my pride and who makes me strive to be a better man, a better father, because as little as we get to spend time with each other, he deserves the best he can get for every window of opportunity we have.  I cannot imagine many things being much greater of a challenge then what I have gone through these first 4 years of his life, but no matter how upset I get, or jealous of other fathers with their sons, when I sit back and hear “Daddy, I love you” or sit and watch him draw a picture of us together, all the emotion gets ripped away, leaving the love and n501461341_60824_3699pride I have in my son.

Unless you have to share custody of a child, you really don’t know the daily personal trials you deal with, including of all things, guilt.  However, the highlight of every other week is the day I know I’ll be going down and getting him.  It always seems like the work day goes faster.  It hurts to see how quickly he grows where I see him in spurts rather then on a daily basis.  In what feels like a flash of light he can go from barely talking, to singing his ABCs, to asking me to read every single road sign between the drop off and home.  Its a strange sensation, having such joy and personal hurt out of the same thing, but that the reality of it.  I won’t be there to play tooth fairy when he loses a tooth.  I’m not 12432_185816566341_501461341_3044425_5218227_nable to take a day off work and stay home with him when he’s sick.    I’ve not been  able to be who I wanted to be for him.  Am I better?  I try to be, but its hard to truly tell, when most of our one-on-one time is spent traveling on the road because once he’s home, everyone wants to see him.  I hate having to share when I have such a small amount of time, but I hate him not being around his family worse, so I do my best to swallow my selfishness for him.

I realize I won’t get to do some of the things with him like other fathers will, my time is limited right now, but it was my decision to be his father, to stand up and take responsibility, and no matter how hard the road is to travel sometimes, I’d never go back and change the path I chose, because he is my son, and I love him with all my heart.  Happy Birthday son.


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Drawing with Bug

One of my favorite things right now is watching Bug draw. Something about how serious and intense her look is as she concentrates on the page, I just love it!

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Selfish Self Promotion

I accidentally poked a hole in Abby’s float last time we went to the pool, hope she doesn’t mind me using the chance to selfishly self promote!

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Spaghetti Hair

Okay, this just might be with my kids in my home, but I have a feeling this isn’t isolated, so I throw this question out to you:  Why do kids want to put spaghetti in their hair and on top of their heads?!  At least for me, this seems to be the only food that gets the privilege of being carefully and purposefully placed on the top of ones cranium.  Sure, others will be thrown, smashed, played with and anything else those little minds can come up with, but spaghetti, with or without sauce, is thought out, calmly placed.  A calculated action by one so small.

I realize the argument could be made that food manages to make its way into kids hair all the time, and I don’t disagree.  I was just having to clean cookie out from behind Bug’s ear just the other day and wondering how she managed to get it there.  I’m not arguing or questioning that, because that can happen with a simple arm movement or having to scratch ones head.  That is a common occurrence.

No, I’m asking, why is it spaghetti that gets the special treatment of intentionally, not accidently or randomly place, but intentionally place on top of the head?  I cannot being to question one’s motives when it comes to such, but all I can do is submit the follow picture as evidence…


I rest my case your honor.  The Spaghetti Hair Monster is alive and well at the Geekasm household. (Until the bathwater is ran, of course)

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Corruption of the young…with Wonder Woman #600

So my 8 year old has currently been asking questions regarding collecting.  She wants to collect something, she’s wanting to make something her own.  Basically she’s trying to find who she is and develop her own identity, but currently has trouble letting go of the desire to make everyone around her happy with her.  Well the other day, she just randomly starting sorting through some of my old comic books I have up stairs.  Now first off, you have to understand I used to be a HUGE comic geek back in the day, I mean huge!  Was a heavy collector of all things Spider-man, well before the movies, and I had a great collection too, unfortunately I really don’t have any of it left, through circumstances I’m not proud of at all.  Anyway, she started asking question, like how long did I buy them, where did I buy them, etc. and actually sat down and started reading an issue of JLA.

Well today, I did something that gave me a small spark of pride, and a large chunk of questioning motives.  Fortunately my job takes me many places throughout the state, and when coming home, I was able to pass what used to be my main stop for all things comics back in the day in Somerset, Ky.  The store is Collector’s Comics, and fortunately for myself, the place was still there.  Well I walked in with the determination to find 2-3 comics that would give a good range of what my 8 year old might or might not enjoy reading and/or collecting.  A task that I found was not as smooth and easy as I had hoped, as I found out, and explained to the man working the store, its not that easy to shop for comics for someone else!!

So after much browsing and fighting the urge to buy a large group of books for myself,perez600 I came away with 3, those being Tiny Titans, the current Supergirl (#54 I believe) and the recently released Wonder Woman #600.  I had already read WW through a different means, so I knew the issue, not only being a starting point for a story for her, but also gave her a few separate stories she could read and get a feel for how comics are.

Where this will lead, I have no clue as she hasn’t sat down to read any yet, but already has one of my unused bags and boards to place her WW #600 in once she’s completed with it, and she already plans on going through my books and pulling ones she’d like to look at.  So either I will soon have what will be an avid comic fan (and my new excuse for running to the local store on Weds) or this will be a phase that burns out as quickly as it was ignited.  Only time will tell, so we can only sit back and wait (and read the news headlines coming in from SDCC)

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The little things….

Last night, a Lexington Police officer was killed in the line of duty by a hit and run while he was investigating a call.  He was 27 and a father.  Its a sad and tragic story that has been on the news all morning. [news article]  Even though I had already processed the story, thought about how selfless those men and women are, swallowed the distaste for the coward of a man who did this, nothing struck me more profoundly and brought me to such soul searching until I saw this on facebook posted by Kristen Pflum, a reporter for LEX 18.


Reading this caused my heart to sink, something I even acknowledged with a comment on this status saying as much.  Its hard to believe that sometimes I do forget how much I wanted to be a Dad.  Its one of the reasons I never fought to save my first marriage, something I’ve never admitted to until now, on this rarely read blog.  We were in two different places in life, and maybe it was selfish of me, but I wanted kids, I knew I did, I wanted to be a Dad so bad, to be able to feel that love, and when she said she didn’t, it changed my whole perspective, it changed everything for me in regards to her.

Then when Canaan came around, so many grey clouds and questions with that, its hard to imagine it could have been any more of a mess.  I don’t hide the fact that I regret not having the chance to be involved more when he was first born, even more so as I have watched Abby grow, but I don’t regret fighting and being determined to be a part of my son’s life.  All the times I cried and was upset, fighting and struggling with his mom, thinking that it would be easier to not be involved.  My heart would never let me do that, I might have thought it at my lowest points, but I don’t regret ever making the decisions I’ve made, I question them sure.  What little I am able to be involved in his life right now, of course I question if the little he gets to see me is actually a good thing for him or if it just confuses him and makes some things worse.  Why wouldn’t I?  He’s my son, I want the best for him, and even though it might hurt me, I want him happy, and I seriously question if I’m selfish sometimes when it comes to wanting to be his father more then I am now.  He has grown every time I’ve picked him up, he breaks my heart every time he asks when he gets to go back to his mom, or not telling me he loves me, or cries when I come to pick him up, but I would never change the fact that I’m his father.  I never for even a moment not want to be his Daddy.

And even though he’s my first, and I have Katlyn, who for someone that doesn’t share an ounce of blood with me will end up being like me more then my two biological kids, and challenges me as a parent and a person everyday, and I love her with everything in me, my heart is with my Bug.  I have 3 kids, and I’ve only got to be around 1 during their first year, to watch them grow, get teeth, try to walk to say Daddy, to yell DaDa, to just mumble it, partially because that’s all she can say.  To hear them cry and laugh to watch her struggle with something new, and see the determination in her beautiful blue eyes.  She has been everything I wanted and looked forward to in regards to being a parent.  And if anyone that reads this, thinks I’m putting Canaan and Katlyn down, or saying they’re less of anything, I’m not.  I’d do anything for any of my kids.  My kids are my heart and my life.  I would probably surprise people how many times a week I sit and wonder if I’m doing the right thing, if I’m a good or a bad parent.  I have a lot of alone time, a lot of driving, and they’re always a constant thought.  Wondering how I can connect more with Katlyn as she gets older and I more and more become “Dad”.  How I can connect more with Canaan in terms of father and son, something I feel I fail at because of what little time I have.  They’re both a challenge and heartbreak for me because I do feel I let them down.  Abby is just the better reminder of why I wanted to be a parent, why I looked forward to it and what makes me so determined to be a good parent, a good man and roll model for all three.  I’d do anything for them, and even though I have to get onto them, and their behavior drives me insane at times, I cherish ever single second and already wish I would rewind time, or free time in a single moment.  I feel guilty losing sight of that.  With all the stress and rushing that life gives me I could say its easy for me to forget the little things, but that’s shameful to when its the little things that drive me.  That get me to strive to be a better man.  To be someone they would be proud to call Dad.  The little things that are the most important in life are the same that are so easily taken for granted.  Little moments in their life as they grow, the joy in just one of their cheese tooth filled or joyful 3 tooth smiles, the satisfaction of accomplishing one of your life goals…and like being able to come home to the love of your children…

If you can’t tell by the rambling, my children are my life and soul.  Everything I’ve ever done and will ever do, is and will forever be for and about them.  I hate that such a horrible tragedy brought to light how selfish and unappreciative I’ve been of the little things lately.  I hate that a son will now grow up without his Dad because his Dad had it in him to be a great man.  I hate that a father won’t be able to throw a ball to his boy, or to be in the stand for his son to see as he stands out in a ball field.  To carry him on his shoulders, or to be there as a “man” the first time a girl breaks his heart.

In all the politics, stress, debt and struggle we go through as adults in everyday life, its scary we forget to cherish the little things that keep us going.  Something Brayden will never have to struggle with.

God Bless Bryan Durman.

2 of my “little things” after dropping off their big sister at school.  4/30/10

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