Fatherhood – A Transcending Journey of Personal Growth

January 15th, 2021 by dayat Leave a reply »

During a lunch conversation with an acquaintance, someone asked me,

‘I heard your wife is pregnant. So, when will you become a father?’

‘Actually I am a father already’ I said.

‘Oh, I didn’t know your wife has given birth already!’

‘No. She is still in her 1st trimester of pregnancy!’ He was staring at me with funny look!

When do we become FATHER? Is it when our child is born or once he/she is conceived in the mother’s womb? Not trying to be philosophical or abstract here. Fatherhood is not so much a biological process but rather a maturing process that will challenge us in many aspects of who we are as a person. Fatherhood transcends the title of being called a father or daddy! Fatherhood reflects our inner values, true character and virtues, if any.

I am a very ‘matured’ or aged father. My fatherhood did not arrive until the age of 46. When my wife was conceived, I couldn’t quite grasp the reality that I am a father. I had long given up the hope of fathering a child. Suddenly, I was blessed by the goodness of the Creator with a child. To me, the little image that I first saw in the ultrasound image was an awesome and touching experience from Heaven. What I thought I could or would never have, I have all of a sudden.

Fatherhood is influenced by many factors or persons including our father, upbringing and personal character development over the years. Sadly, I have heard, known and seen some ‘fathers’ living without much thought of what it means to be a father, except viewing it as an inescapable attachment of a title and economic burden due to some natural biological consequence. The view of this new role as a heavy burden rather than a blessing seems to torment these men of such mentality and attitude. Our view of fatherhood directly affects our family and the fate of our next generation. It will have great impact on many lives, not just our child, but also our immediate circle of family. We can leave behind a legacy that can and will influence our descendants. However, let’s limit our focus to the next generation.

We are responsible for who our children will grow up to be. Or, at the least, we play a key role in preparing them for who they might become one day. Many parents leave their child to the teachers at school. When something went wrong, they start looking for scapegoats. They blame the teachers and bang tables at school. Why are we blaming the school or the teachers? The child is ours or the school’s? The teachers’?. Like it or not, we will shape our children future. More correctly, we will shape them for who they aspire to be or hate to be.

BUT, fatherhood takes more than just being responsible. Responsibility and accountability suit well for a job or at work. If fathers are merely being responsible and accountable, then we have not touched the heart of fatherhood. Trustees and guardians are expected to be responsible and accountable by the legal system. Yes, fathers are charged with responsibility and accountability.

Examine our motives and idea of fatherhood. When we nurture and teach our child, what are our motives and expectation? Are we holding the cane, trying to pound the child into our shadow? We are we. Our child is our child. Or, are we trying to beat and mold them into someone we long to be? What we could not be, we expect them to be? Worse, are we letting them to be molded and savaged by random environmental forces?

Fathers, sit back and examine our heart and mind. Fatherhood is more than the significance of a figure feared by our child. Fatherhood is far beyond the male ego within us. Fatherhood is our test of character. Do we love our child because of the biological connection? Do we love our child only when are free and convenient? If that is the case, we don’t know what love is. We only loving ourselves selfishly.

Fathers, grow up! Develop beyond the capability of who you are. When the dusts settle, do we sigh the

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