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Fatherhood: One of the Most Important Jobs

Author: Jack Regan

Picture: Pixabay

Fatherhood: One of the Most Important Jobs

New Dad Jack Regan is tired, broke, and has sleepless nights-but he feels incredibly grateful about life with his wife and son.

The birth of our son wasn’t like most births. There was no mad dash to the hospital and no midwife shouting puuuuuush! If anything, it was all rather calm.

Not long after his due date, we discovered that he was ‘breech’ – the wrong way up, basically – and the medics recommended we have a C-Section. A few days later, we were taken into a very peaceful, clean operating theatre. Gilly, my wife, was given an aenesthetic injection and a friendly Indian surgeon got to work.

Expectant fathers are almost always allowed to stay in the room for C-Sections. I was told I could stand wherever I liked, just as long as I didn’t get in the way.

Not really wanting to see my wife cut open, I opted for the head end!

Parenthood is a Complete Hand Grenade

We were half way through the sixth decade of the rosary when a midwife appeared holding a very slimy crying baby. “Here you go,” she said. And there he was. Little Timothy. My son. My beautiful little boy. My Dizzle. There are several other nicknames.

My life changed so much in that moment. My days are so different from what they were a year ago, and almost unrecognisable from when I was single back in 2014.

Make no mistake, parenthood is a complete hand grenade. I’m usually tired, I’m very short of money, and there’s not one single thing that comes out of that little boy that I haven’t got on my clothes and my hands!

Yet, for all the difficulties, my life is beautiful, and I wouldn’t change any of it. When I look at my son, I get a small, imperfect glimpse of the love that God the Father has for me, and that’s worth all the poo and sleeplessness.

To Love and Be Loved

Catholic theology tells us that we are ‘essentially’ rather than ‘contingently’ social. In other words, we enter into relationships and communities because it’s a natural part of who we are.

Nowhere is this seen more vividly than in the way babies are born into families. Timothy just simply would not be alive if we did not take the time to look after him, and we would be greatly diminished, too.

One of the greatest gifts God has given us is the ability to love and to be loved.

Every day, I try to carve out an hour with my son. Just me and him – tickling, playing, and letting him know that his daddy loves him. If twenty years as a youth worker has taught me anything, it’s that quality family time matters. As a father, it’s one of my main tasks each day.

Key to that quality time is prayer. Every day, we make time to pray as a family, and I’m sure we always will.

A Commitment To Evangelisation

Since Timothy came along, I’ve been far more sensitive to anything that harms children, especially abortion.

I’ve always been pro-life, but I’ve never been much of a campaigner. Consider this, though: Timothy was born at exactly 10.42am. If he were in New York, China, or a bunch of other places, it would have been perfectly legal at 10.41am to kill him.

I cannot even begin to get my head round that. It’s made me all the more determined to commit myself to evangelisation – the only pro-life strategy that really works.

Life needs defending and cherishing because life is beautiful. Life is an awesome gift from the Father, who infuses an image of the life of the Trinity into us.

May God strengthen all dads in one of the most important jobs there is!

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