Adventures Of Fatherhood

Adventures Of Fatherhood

I learned the hard way this week that the 6-year-old of the house cannot keep a secret.

On the way to karate the other night, Beckett and I stopped in Park Place Jewelers to pick up Pam’s birthday present. I made Beckett promise to not tell her beforehand and explained why. He seemed to understand and I even got the “I got it” comment from my son in his best teenage imitation. As it turns out, he didn’t have it, as the promise only lasted a few hours.

While having some couch time right before bedtime, Beckett, who can be prone to not thinking before he speaks, said, “Oh Mommy, I missed it, how did you like those earrings we got you for your birthday?”

My face must have said it all because he immediately realized what he had done and started calling himself all sorts of silly names as a result of the goof. He never really apologized. Instead, he tried to backtrack, which only made it worse.

For her part, Pam was a good sport about it all and acted surprised the next morning when she opened her gift.

Beckett even played along and asked if he could see them (like it was the first time) and even asked me where I got them. He wasn’t fooling anyone though.

Back on Father’s Day, Pam and the boys gave me a GoPro camera.

Like most things, it sat on the counter for a couple weeks before I took the time to sit down and figure out how to use it. I have since enjoyed using it primarily as a video camera in the water.

So far the big thing with the kids is when I use it as a diving stick of sorts. I place it on the bottom of the pool and have them dive down and get it. It captures their facial expressions in tremendous clarity.

It has provided some funny videos, particularly when Beckett dives down to get it. The video involves him with his eyes wide open and moving his mouth with bubbles coming out. You can even hear some sounds, although it’s impossible to make out what’s being said.

When I played it back for him the other day, I asked him what he was doing and he explained that he was talking underwater. When I asked him why he was doing that, he responded with the question of “why not?”

That got me to thinking how things really do have a way of evening out in life, like the skit in a former Seinfeld show involving Jerry’s friends Elaine and George heading in opposite directions in their respective lives.

Here we have two boys, 6 and 4 years of age, in our house. We have Carson, who has yet to say a word in four and a half years and we are not sure if he will ever speak due to his disability. We surely hope and pray he does one day, but because he has never spoken it’s difficult to imagine our house with two verbal kids.

Additionally, it’s hard to fathom at this point because we have Beckett, who started talking clearly before his first birthday and has not stopped since with the exception of a little bit of sleep here and there. He is a verbose type who often provides a running commentary incessantly and says whatever comes to his mind usually. The result is typically a lot of laughter on our part.

Thanks to my GoPro, I now know that he also talks when he’s underwater and have the footage to prove it.

Beach or pool?

That’s the question Pam and I routinely face on summer weekend days when we have nothing planned. It’s a simple one and usually involves a combination of both on each day.

Either is a great and memorable way to spend a family day. Usually, we make the decision based on the weather and ocean conditions because I learned earlier this summer if the ocean is too rough for the boys to enjoy then we have a challenging day ahead.

However, neither a pool day or a beach day are what I would call relaxing, but I think I give the nod to the beach as the more relaxing of the two.

At least with the beach, both boys are always in constant motion and have a lot to keep them entertained besides their parents. There’s the sand, toys, balls, beach friends and, of course, the ocean. It’s impossible not to get exhausted with all those options.

With the pool, more of the energy exertion is dependent on the parents. There are the demands to be thrown (and even caught sometimes). There are the splash competition requests. There is the deep end to contend with for the youngest, and don’t even get me started on the running around the pool part. Generally, it’s just more on the parents.

At least with the beach, they can be independent for the most part and do not require constant parent involvement to have fun.

Although we are not there yet, and I am careful not to wish any of it away, I do look forward to the day when I can sit in my beach chair at the water’s edge and watch them in the ocean. That day will be here soon enough, and I will probably sit there reminiscing on the days when I would carry both of them in the ocean — one on my shoulders and the other in my arms.

That’s at least what I keep reminding myself.