Our 443rd Dad in the Limelight is James Ward. I want to thank James for being a part of this series. It has been great getting connected with him and now sharing him with all of you.
My name is James, I am an information junky and think outside the box. I am from southern Missouri, and grew up on a farm. I work as a System Administrator (I am the IT department) for a mid-sized company, and family is very important to me. I’m not sure why I’m in the “Limelight”, but let’s rock and run with it. You can read more about my life on my blog – http://presentdaydad.blogspot.
There are many challenges that I have faced as a father. I’m sure everyone has challenges and adapt to them as they come. My biggest challenge that I have faced is having a child that had a fatal birth defect. It was a little over a year ago that my world got turned upside down. We were pregnant with our second daughter and during a routine ultrasound, the tech stopped and said she would be right back. Something wasn’t right. I have been to these before and things just don’t stop. Maybe she had to go to the bathroom. She came back and finished a few things and we left. We got a phone call an hour later and the doctor wanted to see us. Our daughter had a defect called anencephaly, a fatal defect that the upper part of her brain did not develop. We made the decision to complete the pregnancy and spend what time we could with our little angel. Yes, this was devastating knowing that our daughter was going to be born in this world and we would have to give her back. We didn’t know how long, but I would NEVER choose the other option. That was the most challenging, but also the best 6 hours and 27 minutes she could have given us.
Just like marriage and anything else you do in life, patience is the key. You are going to be tested and you will be on the verge of losing your composure. The key is to stop and use patience. Remember that the first few years are an overwhelming wave of emotions for both you and your children. I’m not saying all kids are bad. I’m saying that there is a lot going on in that little head of theirs.
My outside life is very busy. I am the only IT staff covering 250 employees and 7 sites around the US. I am the IT department. That is very taxing on one person and there is always something going on. I also maintain a couple of blogs, and read a LOT of blogs. I take my evening after work to play and interact with my family. We play and do crafts, the wife and I hang out on the couch with the TV off and phones are put on a desk across the room. I always take a couple of hours after work to sit back and enjoy our family.
I have learned that I am not alone. There is always someone there that can relate. I do not have many Dad friends other than the Dad bloggers that I talk to online. There really isn’t a reason that I do not interact with other local Dads. I guess the only reason that I can think of is the area that I live in is a farm driven community. The fathers work on the farm and they do not play as strong of a roll as I do.
The roll of the Dad in a household has evolved over the years. They are no longer the image of authority (just wait til your dad gets home) and they interact with the entire family. I grew up in a house that I rarely saw my Dad. He was always working or finding something else to provide for the family.
Children are always learning, watching, judging, and interacting. They are not an annoyance that is always needy. When they ask you something, it’s because they are learning. Teaching, as a parent, starts as soon as you look at your new bundle of joy. If you have any questions for James, please leave a comment here and I will make sure that he gets them so that he may be able to respond!
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