Saturday, December 26, 2009


Once, when Nate and I were discussing the way I parented him, he said that he always thought of me as too self-centered to be a really good father. He seemed to think that often when I was around the house, around him, I wasn't really present. Except, maybe to get angry with him when he distracted me from the things I was focussed on.

I defended myself. I don't remember exactly what I said. Something about how much I thought about him all the time. I tried to make it sound like the way I thought about him was on an emotional level equal in some way to the power of my perceived absence. I don't think he bought it, but he had the mature grace to let me pretend that he was persuaded.

But--and this is why I'm actually blogging on the day after Christmas--Nate was right. I was quite self-centered (still am, I guess) and I wanted to get it written down here so that I couldn't take it back.

Still, let me try to extract something of value from this. Three things, really. I'm proud of Nate, of the adult he has become. I hope Nate knows that he is right in his understanding of how much more I could have done for him and with him. And, I hope all of us understand that every day is a chance to do better.

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