The 7 Pillars Of Good Parenting I Learned From Being A Dad

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The following was syndicated from Medium for The Fatherly Forum, a community of parents and influencers with insights about work, family, and life. If you’d like to join the Forum, drop us a line at [email protected].

I am the type of person who typically chooses to learn something as I go, which has been beneficial and hindering for me throughout my years on Earth. Being a dad has been no different at all. Before becoming a father to my son, I had never rocked a child to sleep, changed a diaper, woke up in the middle of the night to feed a baby, been peed on … the list goes on and on. But in that regard, I have never felt love like the love I feel for my son. So like all things in life, I need to adapt to the things that take me out of my comfort zone and enjoy this newfound love that I never knew could exist.

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So, to the point … being a dad has taught me the most important lessons that can be taught, in my opinion.

Humility

Being a dad has taught me more about the importance of being humble. I ask questions to other parents all the time because I do not pretend to know remotely close to all there is to know about parenting. I will also add that nothing has been more humbling for me than when my son cries and I cannot seem to console him (fortunately, this happened a lot more in his first few weeks and is fairly rare now).

Patience

I am not a very patient person, but I have found that a parent must be patient because things will not always go as planned and sometimes we have no control over that. I always keep in perspective that this little guy is expressing himself the only way he knows how and it is my job to try and make him as comfortable and happy as possible, which a lot of times requires a great deal of patience.

Respect

To every woman who has ever given birth to a baby … MAD RESPECT!

To Enjoy The Simple Things

Since becoming a dad, I find myself enjoying the simple things a lot more than I used to. I couldn’t care less what’s on TV as long as Van is in the room; walks have never been better than when I get to share them with my son. Take the time to enjoy the simple things because those moments mean the most in the end.

Be Quiet

When the baby is sleeping … BE QUIET! My sister always used to stress this to me and I never had much respect for her wishes, but I see the importance now.

Laughter

I think I’ve laughed more in the 4.5 months since Van was born than I laughed all of last year. Having a child has taught me to laugh at the little things.

Love

The love I feel for Van is something that will never go away; it is something that I cannot explain, but I know that it means everything to me. From the way he smiles, to the way that he holds his rattle … it all makes me smile bigger than ever before. I cherish that little guy and I hope I do him justice by raising him to be the best human he can be.

Zach is a husband, father, and educator that is passionate about sharing his experiences through writing.

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