Dad vs. Chapter Three

Never give up, never surrender. No matter how defeated you might feel, know that there are so many moments like this where you will find strength. But only if you learn to look for the small wins… Even the smallest of wins add up over time to create momentum. And my friends, momentum is all you need… I love you all. – Michael

Facebook – 06 June 2014, 8:36am

Dad – vs. – Chapter Three

I spent the first few years hiding from my family. I was filled with so much shame about what was happeining, and shamed over all the things I couldn’t do. I didn’t want them to see me as weak, and in the early years I didn’t want Aedans last memory of me to be as a severely crippled and weak Man. I still fight it, as my ego wants to show my Son that I’m Superman, capable of anything and I would have wanted him to see me as big and strong. Always. Perhaps some of you can relate.

Through this journey, I’ve been forced to learn far more humility than I imagined, and I’ve learned that I have to be honest with my Son now instead of hiding it. Or at least more open than Id like.

If you read my last post, I spoke of my inability to read chapter books like Mama does. But Aedan knows that trying something you can’t do almost always makes you better. During that last conversation I told him we’re going to read a chapter book. We might not get through much, but we’re going to do it.

He, being my Son, turned it into a game. Like the TV show ‘Man vs Food’.

He brought the book Mama was reading, she left off at Chapter Three.

As I started to read, he noticed I was struggling and moving the book (my eyes change focus continualy) to see. He asked what happenswith my eyes, so I told him. They hurt from strain to see the small letters, the double-vision becomes very noticable when focusin on smaller things and my eyes get tired, so soon the page looks like nothing but a black blob. He said ‘It’s okay Dad, we don’t have to read this, let’s go back to ‘Hop on Pop…’ he’s so sweet.

No I said. We may have to keep taking breaks, but we’re going to read until I can’t read a single word. And we did. During our frequent breaks (every half page or so) he’d chant ‘Dad vs Chapter Three! Go Dad!’

It took about an hour, we got through about 8 pages. We checked and turns out Chapter Three has 12 more pages! *%#&!

He thought it should be time to quit. But nope, we were having a good time. And I wasn’t done yet. Another 20 mins and we finished another page and a half. But we went well past the point where I or he thought we’d get.

My old ego didn’t like failing in front of my Son. But the new and real me? I loved every second. I learned that my Son sees me struggle, sure. But he also sees that I never ever quit. He is so supportive and we are learning together to make a great team. And he’s the best cheering section a father could ever ask for.

Chapter Three won this round, but I’ll be back!! Grrr…

I don’t have access to my Blog still, so I’m posting this here. I know it’s long. But I also know that I would have needed to read this when I was at my worst.

Aedan taught me a valuable lesson that I want to share.

He doesn’t care if Daddy can’t do some things, or can’t read him the books he loves. He just wants his Daddy, in whatever shape I’m in. And he’s proud to be my cheering section.

Your children love you. Sick or not. Please, take this to heart and work on losing the shame. It is a dark Evil that will eat you alive. Take my word for it.

Thank you for reading, and go out and do something today that you’re sure you cannot. I began Chapter Three convinced I could get through it. And next time I fail to finish, I will also have been convinced I could. Just live my friends…

I am the luckiest man in the world. No matter what my physical state would suggest.

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