The Reality of Fatherhood
Before I got married I had six theories about raising children; now, I have six children and no theories.―John Wilmot
By Nzeribe Okechukwu
I used to pride myself for being patient and calm despite the entire hullabaloo happening around me until I met my nephews and my niece. Just one day spent with them and I knew in the deepest recesses of my heart that I was not the calm and collected person I thought I was. Most importantly, I was just not ready for Fatherhood as I presumed. Despite all the books I read, inspirational messages I listened to and supposed counsel I attempted to give those in the field of Fatherhood, I realized I did not have the foggiest idea what it means to be a Father.
Fatherhood does test a man’s character, helping him to grow and mature, especially when he is least ready for such change. While learning new things particularly as it concerns looking after a dependant, it also helps him readjust and unlearn so many preconceived notions once held during the glory days of Bachelorhood. Out the window goes that desire to always hang out with the boys. Gone are those periods when sleeping till late in the day becomes exhilarating. No longer is there less concern for what to eat rather there is a greater worry about what the child would eat.
Fatherhood can be argued to be a profession, and if reflected upon, it is probably the most noble of all professions. The opportunity to mold and shape the character of a child throughout his/her formative years until adulthood, not only demands time and energy, but it also tests the mettle of the parent. The success or failure of his effort is reflected in the life of a child.
In a world badly in need of role models in the mold of responsible Fathers who understand the task before them and who realize that the ability of their children to fit into the world and to contribute positively, depends much on them stepping into their roles as protectors, providers, guides, and disciplinarians for the next generation. They must show examples and lead the way not with theoretical opinions but with concrete positive situations that leave legacies on which the next generation can build upon.
Nzeribe Okechukwu is an entrepreneur and a teller of the African story. In an imperfect world he would have being born elsewhere but considering that perfection is a continuous effort at trial he was born in Africa and has been saddled with showcasing the African brand.
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