When I was a child all I wanted with my Father was to connect with him on some level. We all see the way a son tries to emulate everything the Dad does by walking and talking like him and resting his hand on a hip or putting his chin in his hand while listening to someone. The son is copycatting the Dad. They are trying to connect on the same level as the Father.
I find myself now trying to find some common ground with my son. Now that the show is on the other foot, I can now see that my son is trying his hardest to connect with me in some fashion. I know he is not particularly interested in the latest social media trend or how a business can increase its market share or how the latest in technology is being used to sell widgets, but I see him attempting to get into that conversation. He is trying his best to connect.
My Dad loved hunting and fishing and the outdoors. Frankly as a kid growing up, I really did not love or hate the idea of going hunting, but it was not really on my list of top 5 things I really wanted. I loved sports and loved playing baseball and football and anything of that nature. My Dad was not a jock and was not really very interested in that life like I was not so interested in his. I know he hardly ever missed a game and I found myself in a rainstorm at 10,000 feet worried about being hit by lightning while in a tent deer hunting with my Dad. We made it through the motions for the most part but that was truly all it was. I’m still afraid of lightning as a result.
My son is very much about the video game world. He is dragging me kicking and screaming into that realm. I have learned a few things about the latest releases of new games, and I have done homework on the difference between, Play Station, Wii and XBox. The video game world ranks right up there with folding laundry in my book–nobody wants to do it but it has to get done.
I wonder if all parents have this issue or if it is just some relationships don’t always mesh or come together like a nice fitting puzzle. I know that my brothers have different interests than I do and that my Dad worked his way through their world as well. I’m seeing that each of my three sons are all better than the other at something and that I will be playing sports with one, playing video games with another and reading and making artsy-fartsy things with another. I’m sure I’m not the only one that struggles to connect with each child on the level I feel I should, but as I sit here and think, I know as a Dad its my duty to try my best. Now I am off to figure out how I can kick my son’s butt in Madden 12…at least it combines sports and video games. Thank goodness my daughter is a sports fan. It’s easy to connect with her.