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    Thursday, January 5, 2012

    Raising a Super Hero

      I simply love being a Daddy, I can't get enough of it sometimes...other times, it can be tough...but on the whole, I love it! 
    Raising a boy especially can be challenging and super fun all at the same time, especially a boy who thinks he's a super hero! That is my son.  He IS a super-hero.   He is also a complete hoot who continuously says things like:
    MJ: daddy are you sick?
    Me: no MJ are you sick?
    MJ: no, I'm just Spiderman
    When playing with Amelia's (his little sister) cheerleader rubber ducky MJ : "I like cheerleaders! They're hot and they burn my mouth!"
    MJ: mommy I want your coffee
    Me: no MJ you can't have it
    MJ: I can!
    Me: no you can't buddy its for adults
    MJ: Daddy, I'm a poop fake...so I can!
    My son is (in his mind) a super hero that speaks his mind.  Each day he wears a different super-hero shirt and he claims he is that particular hero for that day.  For me, I love this!  Not only am I a huge super-hero fan myself but my son sees himself in a way I as an adult no longer can...he sees that he can be anything he sets his mind to.  He sees a world of possibilities without the limitations I as an adult have.

    I think this is something to be cultivated, not stifled.  I think too often, we are quick to stifle our children's creativity and imagination and self-image.  We give our cynicism, we give our fears and we give our doubts to our children.  We say: "no, you can't be that" or "that's dangerous".  In this and our sometimes "overprotective" parenting I think we fail to cultivate our children's hearts.   When we fail to cultivate their hearts we can hinder them for the long run.

      As a Daddy, I wrestle with my son, I chase him while I pretend to be "The silly Joker" and he is Batman.  I read stories to my son, I teach him how to be a hero and how we are to save the Princesses in our lives (Mommy and Amelia).  I cultivate his warrior spirit and challenge him to act like Jesus.  I teach my son that the dinner table is the only place he can't say "poopy" because it messes with people's eating, but I then say: "saying poopy anywhere else is OK".  I show my son how to love Mommy and love Amelia by giving tender kisses and hugs.  I teach my son the importance of cleaning the house and helping Mommy feel special by doing the dishes.  I do this all in his super-hero language, cultivating the good stuff inside his little 2 year old mind.

    Many may disagree with these things and my approach to them but this is how I Daddy my Super-Hero.  

    I also Daddy by letting MJ try "risky" (to him) things.  For example one time he wanted to jump from a foot stool to the ground.  Hilary had a really tough time with this because he could get hurt.  I told her: "We have got to let him make this jump because if he makes it, imagine how powerful he will feel and how excited he will be at his success.  If he falls, we are right here to comfort him and challenge him to try again".  She eventually relented and we allowed MJ to jump.

    He landed it perfect and the look of sheer excitement went on his face, because he conquered what seemed like a huge challenge!

    As parents, it's not easy to watch our kids do these things, but when they do and they accomplish them without us they grow.

      I think this is particularly important for young men these days.  So many young men have been raised by overprotective parents and these men aren't acting as men.  I do not mean to knock moms, its simply a fact that moms are more protective of their kids than a father is, so things like risk taking and adventures and "being a super-hero" are things that mothers frown upon more often.  

    If a boy doesn't know how to take risks, go on adventures and be a super-hero, he will seek these things as a "man"  in unhealthy ways...or, he will become a lump who does all his adventuring,  "hero-ing" and risk taking on a video game or vicariously through movies.  Which leaves the woman he is supposed to love and rescue forgotten and alone.  More and more men are walking away from wives and families...I do not want my son to be among that number.  I desire to teach him how to be a good man, husband and daddy.

    I love being a Daddy and I love teaching my son about being a hero, going on adventures and taking risks.  I'm not saying I got it perfect, but this a little window in how I am raising my little Super-Hero!


    Unknown said...

    I agree with e erything except I was taught pretending to be a superhero already in existence isn't using there imaginations but someone else's! Other then that right on!