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Becoming Dad Remembering My Journey Into Parenthood This Father’s Day
When my eldest son, Anthony, was born 11 years ago, I was naive enough to think I only needed a few days off from my job in the prosecutor’s office to adjust to our new life. I’ve always been a disciplined and hardworking person, but given that this was my first experience with parenthood, I don’t think I fully understood what the first few days would entail. I remember being so completely absorbed with Melanie and our new baby that a few days of adjusting with my young family wasn’t enough. I wanted to spend more time focusing on my new role as a dad, and looking back, I really enjoyed the time we spent together. I can still hear our human resources professional laughing when I called shortly after Anthony’s arrival to ask if I could take a few weeks off from work. She knowingly said, “We already planned on that. It’s alright.” Since having Anthony, we have added Brayden, 8, and Brenna, 6, to our family, and much has certainly changed since those early days with our first. Melanie and I were typical first-time parents, fretting over Anthony all the time. By the time Brenna joined our family, we worried much less about the shenanigans she could get into because by our third round, we’d learned a few tricks. By no means are we experts though, and every day is a learning experience. I take great pride as I mentor my kids using lessons from my father. Even though Dad was always keen on letting me and my brothers learn from our own mistakes, my approach instead is to teach my children about the mistakes I
made, the lessons I learned, and what they can do differently.
and making mature decisions. Brayden, our middle child, has a wild personality like my younger brother and always runs around making people laugh with his crazy antics. Their younger sister, Brenna, is tough like my youngest brother; she has to be with two older brothers. Her independent spirit also reminds me of my grandparents as she tackles each day with confidence. This Father’s Day will be quiet, but as my family ventures out for brunch, I’m looking forward to spending the day just like I spent my first few weeks of parenthood: surrounded by the love and excitement of the family Melanie and I created.
Both my father and grandfather are big influences on how I parent, but they are very different people. My father was a quiet man, who kept his opinions to himself, while my grandfather was the opposite. He exuded confidence every time he offered his opinion, which he did often. My grandfather’s gusto has influenced me most, but I am appreciative of my father’s quiet ways, too. Now that I am raising three children, I notice just how similar my kids are to my siblings and I. Anthony is like I was as an eldest brother, always following directions
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