Many Paths, Same Destination
By: Mark Sawhill
I struggle pin pointing the moment I became a father. Not in the sense of speculating dates of conception, more the moment I knew and felt I was a father. I believe it is a circuitous stumbling path that leads to fatherhood, especially for me.
I knew I wanted kids of my own from a very young age. Possibly spawned from the musings of parents saying “when you have your own kids, you’ll see,” or just the certainty that that was part of my life’s path. I definitely didn’t see myself jumping in head first in my early 20s, but when a lifelong friend turned love of my life happened to have a beautiful three year old daughter that instantly stole my heart, jump I did.
From dad in dating to step-father, I still can’t specify when I truly became a father. Could it have been the first time my daughter chose to find solace huddled between my legs in line at a crowded restaurant? Or the first time I stepped in as a disciplinary figure for her? I imagine for some fathers it would be seeing their little one for the first time, either at birth or in sonogram images. Maybe even the first and only time in their life they were ecstatic someone just kicked them in the face, resting their head against that unforgettable baby bump.
I reveled in all of those feelings and moments when we had my son as well, but the truth is I became a father a little more with every one of those experiences. When it starts I clearly cannot tell you, but whatever path led you there I wish you a happy Father’s Day and a happy fatherhood.
Since becoming a father I have endeavored to aid other fathers and families on their journeys in whatever way I can. One such way is working to make father a verb. Learn more about me or our monthly dad meet ups in Phoenix here