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Where I remember just how special the title of “daddy” can be

by John on February 6th, 2013

I’m a busy person – and, as a busy person, I find odd times to get stuff done. And, as a health-conscious person, workouts are an important part of my day. This means that, every day, my plan is to wake up early1 and sweat for a bit. I walk the dogs, and take inventory of the weather — if it’s too cold/windy, I choose to spin on my stationary cycle (running into a bitterly cold wind is like trying to run through a wall, and a wall that makes me cough). If the ground is, even remotely, icy, I choose to spin (on a good day, I’m lucky if I don’t trip over my own feet – add ice to the equation, and I have no idea what I’ll do turning a corner . . . nevermind a car) – and then I work out until 6:30 or so.

The thing is, this only takes my own schedule into account, and kind of ignores the fact that my wife is kind of busy, too — and, you know, might like to work out from time to time. Yesterday, as I was trying to figure out if the weather would let me run (it was looking doubtful), Duffy mentioned that she wouldn’t mind if I slept in to let her get some quality time with the spinning bike in. After asking her to let me know if she “just wan’t up to it” as early as possible, she told me that she wanted to work out from 6-7 before getting a start to her day . . . and, well, if I woke up at 4, I could ensure that we could both manage a workout.

So I walked the dogs and found that the temperature was great for a run, but the ground was quite slippery, thanks to a freezing mist the night before . . . so I spun, watching episodes of Breaking Bad and 30 Rock. Then, I had time to myself. I thought that I should turn on my computer and check in on work, or maybe write a little bit — but then I saw that both of my kids were still asleep, so I got under the covers.

CJ is my cuddle-bug. There is seldom a time that he’s not happy to cuddle, so I laid myself down next to him, on the other side of Leila, who goes through random “everybody needs to get away from me right now” phases.

Duffy leaving the room woke Leila, just a little bit. She asked for her stuffed Tinkerbell, and settled down for just a second. Then she got up, kind-of, sleepily, and it was obvious that she had a plan in mind — I thought she was trying to look for the remote control to ask me to put on the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse when she started crawling toward the foot of the bed while mumbling something that I’m sure was fully comprehensible to her — but I was half asleep and my comprehension of the sleepy dialects of toddler is greatly diminished when I, myself, have sleep on my mind.

Leila crawled all of the way to the foot of the bed, and just as I thought she was going to plop herself down there (something she is wont to do, especially when she’s in a “nobody is allowed anywhere near me” phase), she crawled up to me, and placed herself in the nook of my right arm. She took just a moment to make herself comfortable and let out a fake snore (something she’s picked up along the way, though I don’t know where, but always makes me smile) before falling asleep.

For the next hour, I had my daughter nestled in one arm, my son nestled in the other, and drifted off to doze.

I know these moments, at some point, will cease. But I just cannot say how wonderful it was to start my day this way.

1 I plan to wake just past 4am — but there are days that I can’t get myself out of bed until 5….so, yeah, I consider “sleeping in,” to be sleeping until 5am. The college-aged me beats up the realtime me, regularly.

From → Family, Parenting

  1. I have the privilege for the next 9 weeks of watching my children delight in the arrival of their daddy at night. It is a beautiful sight.

    • *hugs* for those next nine weeks. I know what that means you’re going through.

  2. My kids are 13 and 15 and they still snuggle on the couch with me (although my son would deny it to a polygraph tester).

    Love this strong doesn’t necessarily have an expiration date.
    But you’re wise to appreciate the wonder of it now, no matter what.

    • Yes – I find it best to appreciate moments like those when they come, regardless if they may be repeated sometime in the near or distant future.

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