Seeing on Father’s Day

It’s Father’s Day, and I respect the cracks about Hallmark-fabrication and commercialism and the bit. In our house, though, we have a motto: Any reason to celebrate. Miska says it something like this: “In our world, we have every opportunity to be sorrowful. We will seize every opportunity to throw a party.” Mother’s Day, Valentines, St. Patty’s, Groundhog Day if we thought we could get away with it. If it invites a celebration, we’re there.

Today I have been celebrated, and it feels good. I received new sandals and a new camping chair. The best part, though, was our stroll downtown. I talked with Seth most of the way there and then with Wyatt most of the way back. Seth, per the usual, was concerned about what kind of beverages he would have (the boy loves his drinks – we’ll be watching out for that), and Wyatt has hit upon a fascination with the histories of World War I and II.

We had breakfast at Cafe Cubano and sat outside on the pavilion seating, under the shady trees. Miska had everyone share five things they loved about dad. I must say – that was rather enjoyable. I love it when the boys run out of things to say and resort to simply adding on multiple adjectives. By the end, I was the most awesomest, coolest, everest, bestest, in the whole, whole, whole, whole wide world dad – to infinity and beyond.

It’s good to be a dad.

Here’s the essence of my job, as I understand it: to see my boys, to truly see them. I don’t mean merely acknowledging their presence – I mean seeing who they are, their deep, true self. I mean seeing the Wyatt and the Seth God is crafting way down in their bones, the Wyatt and the Seth God has in mind for them to be. The Wyatt who will be alive with courage and see the truth – and call evil to account. The Seth who will hurt with the broken and run headlong into the muck – and be a renegade of joy.

My job as a dad is, in the words of an old Christian apostle Paul, to “see with the eyes of my heart.” I know there’s much more to see, years to take in. These boys have a lot of texture, nothing quaint or shallow here. Many days, I will fight my own distraction and boredom and irritation and selfishness. Other days, I will run up against their lethargy or silence – or worst, their walking away. There will be stretches when I wonder if it matters or if they will ever care about a lick of it. It’s going to take a lot of patience. A lot of love. A lot of Spirit. I’m in.

Because I see, I see…