Thursday, February 09, 2006

Random Spark Plug

I think that sometimes I have random thoughts.

But I like them.

I like to think about being things I'm not. Sometimes just for fun and other times to sort things out. The other day I was thinking about being a dad. I see nothing better than being a parent or spouse; however, I am not yet either or even close to becoming either.

I also had not just seen a mommy or daddy with a baby, and it had been a while since I have received the “you should get married” speech from my church leaders or parents. So me thinking about being a dad, pretty random. During my daydream, while walking down the stairs of death at BYU, I was thinking about what it would be like to race my own little boy up them. I thought that it could be fun. But then I remembered how frustrating it can be as a kid, when you race someone so much stronger than you. When you try your hardest against kids your age you at least feel somewhat equal, like there's a chance. But when trying your hardest against an adult, especially in physical things, it can be so frustrating. You don’t have a chance. No way. Their legs are like the size of your chest and their arms the size of your legs. Even the skinny adults (like me) are pretty huge to someone who is 65lbs.

When I thought of what my response would be to my little boy who showed this frustration I was surprised at my response.

“Dad, I can’t do it!” he said.

“Yes you can.”

“No I can’t."

I pictured him about 10 steps behind me with one of the faces where the lower lip was sticking out over his upper lip and the eyes glazed with water. I walked up to him and crouched down to his eye level, wiping a tear he fought so hard to keep up but lost.

“Are you trying to beat me, or are you trying to get better?” was my response.

And then it ended.

Now that may not sound so profound to you, but I’m a pretty competitive guy. In sports, academics (when I feel like I have a chance to be, which has diminished over the years), games, fitness, driving (this state of Utah is rubbing off on me, scary I know), and sadly even in spiritual things some times. I’m always comparing myself to others. Not “always” always, but too much. It was a good question to ask myself. I only want to become better, but sometimes it is overshadowed or even driven by a desire to beat the guy next to me. It was a special little experience. I am learning a principle I hope to help teach my children no matter how talented or untalented the may be.

Cool huh.

8 comments:

Margaret said...

Nice one, Poshua! I like it. I think you'll be great dad, first of all, and second of all, I think that's a really key thing to remember - so we can teach our kids someday but also for ourselves. The PURPOSE here is improvement. Also achievement, but not achievement in the sense of beating someone else, achievement in the sense of being what WE can be. Cool.

Josh said...

Thanks Margaret. I appreciate that response.

Margaret said...

Oh, hey, and it's also about allowing others to help us become the best we can become. Your little boy gets better from racing you because you are faster and stronger than he is.

Bill Karoly said...

I remember when you and I used to play checkers. You used to get so mad at me when you lost. Then you got mad at me when you won. I'll admit that at times I did let you win but it honestly did not take long before you beat me fair and square and it frustrated me as a dad when you would not believe it.

There were many times when you were younger that I got more frustrated with you than you with me. When you were a baby you used to have night terrors that lasted close to two hours. Then you started having these same terrors in the day time and they frustrated your mother and I.

Now look at you. You served faithfully in every calling you ever received in Church. You were a valiant missionary and you are still to this day an excellent example of what a father hopes his son to be.

I am proud of you son. You'll be a Dad soon enough.

Love,
Your Dad

Syd said...

thanks for sending me the notice, it was great.

Anonymous said...

Joshie,
You are such a sweet boy and I'm proud of you.
-emc

E.Ro said...

I want to make sure I'm around when your little boy brags about how awesome his dad is. I'll have to sit him down and read him this post. :-)
You are fabulous.

daisy said...

it's interesting how there comes a point in your life when such ideas start frequening your thoughts. don't get me wrong, i love the way my life is now, but life could be so much different... they are nice thoughts though :) no worries.