Just like me
A quick story about a father and his son.
One day a boy came home from school with excitement in his eyes. “The school is having a play! I want to be part of it!” What would you like to do, son? Would you like to be in the play or be part of the stage crew?
A few days go by and the application comes home.
Well son, have you decided? “I want to be the Stage Manager!” [My doubt and fear settle in – he’s only 9]. Could he do it? Does he know what he’s getting himself into? “Well son, let me help you fill out the application. I KNOW HOW TO ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS!”
“No dad! I want to do it. Let me do it!”
[This went back and forth more times than I’d like to admit]
1) List the things about yourself that will help you be the Stage Manager.
“I’m a good leader. I’m artistic. I’m creative.”
2) Tell us about any experience you had that will help you in this role.
“This will be my first time.”
[More doubt – More fear] What if he doesn’t get it? Why won’t he take my advice? Why doesn’t he want my help? I CAN GIVE HIM THE ANSWERS HE NEEDS!
Several weeks go by and the selections have been made.
Guess who’s the new Stage Manager? Yep, my son.
Wanting to protect him from being disappointed; thinking he’s not ready for something after he tells me he is; believing MY experiences will guide him through this…man, this fathering thing. It’s a bit more complicated than I thought.
Sure he’ll look for my guidance and sure I’ll be here to help. That’s what being a father is about for me. What I’ve learned though is that those moments are his to choose.
I remember when he was just a young little boy, holding my hand to cross the street; taking in every single word I had to say. I’ve been waiting for him to start carving his own path – I just didn’t know it would be this soon.