We were pretty much kids ourselves, age twenty, spending spring break in Mexico - years before I knew Paul was going to be my husband, much less the father of my babies. We had broken up a few months before, and the trip to Cancun was, I suppose, just wishful thinking on both our parts that we might get back together.
One day when we were down at the pool there were some really young boys playing "pool basketball." Paul joined in with them enthusiastically. I sat poolside and observed, impressed that he would take time to hang eight-year-olds on his spring break. He was very patient with them, and just plain sweet. I don't know why, but as I watched him interacting with those kids I had a "moment." Just like the first time I met him, when I felt all the air rush out of me in an exhilarating whoosh of excitement. Or like years later, on a camping trip with my family, when it dawned on me, with perfect clarity, that I would not marry any man but him.
Moments like that are like guideposts - where something stirs inside you, and you think, "I don't know why, but I'll always remember this." God is leading you, revealing something important, speaking through that moment...as simple and normal as the moment may seem.
Paul ended up being what I saw that day down at the pool. Patient and fun, a dad who enjoys playing with and teaching our kids. He also ended up being so much more!
While neither of us are perfect parents by any means, but rather just muddling through, I'm grateful to have a partner in that muddling who knows how to have fun with our babes, and who loves them and delights in their stubborn, spirited, yet sweet personalities. A man who works super hard to support our family financially, and spends the rest of his "free" time either working on our crazy home renovation or spending quality time with us. He is a pretty unselfish husband and father.
Recently when Paul first watched the slideshow for Finola's birthday, he asked, sounding somewhat bruised, "Where am I in all these photos???" In truth, he was only in a few. We laughed about it a bit, but it makes sense : I stay at home with the kids full time so he just ends up on proportionately fewer photos.
But, here you go, babe...this one's for you! We love you and are infinitely grateful for your hard work at your "real job" and all that you do to make our 'house a home.'
Happy belated Father's Day!
I swear, one day, you'll get your gifts on time. When the kids are grown, perhaps.