Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Born to be Mikan's Dad?

I know every dad has a moment when they realize one of their biggest (if not largest) roles in life is to provide for their kids.
After having moved, I am coming to realize that my entire life to this point was somewhat intentionally preparing me to take care of my kids, especially Mikan.  I am convinced of this for the following reasons...

1.) I am as frugal as they come, and always have been.  Had it not been for this frugality, there is no way we would be living where we live now without Jenna working outside the home.  Our only reason for moving is because of Mikan's BACA therapy.  So, me deciding to attend college and go to grad school largely based on where I would not take on any debt allows Jenna to better care for Mikan and Anica today.  This goes without mentioning the vehicles we drive.

2.) Spending large amounts of time studying maps in elementary and middle school.  I know where Mikan is talking about and ask him questions about it.  I see many adults who interact with him shy away from geographical conversations as if they are geophobes or something.  Not me.  I nearly went to Western Michigan to get a Master's in Geography.  However, it is probably better that I have the insurance of a teacher to help cover much of Mikan's therapies.

3.) My last 7 years teaching, especially those with autism or CP.  Those students are helping me become a better dad, while my son definitely helps me be a better teacher.  I get to use what I learn about Mikan on them.  I didn't have to go into education, but I did, and this complements my duties to family.

4.) I have a job close enough to BACA to have allowed us to explore it as an option for Mikan.  Often I hear from Jenna that she has no doubt that this is the best place for him to be spending his days.  Imagine if I worked in Ft. Wayne or further from Elkhart.  We might never have entertained the thought of driving him to the north side of Elkhart everyday to even give BACA a try.

5.) I have a math minor.  Mikan loves numbers.

6.) Almost needless to say...Marrying Jenna nearly 7 years ago was pretty damn good for Mikan as well.

There are times when I wish God didn't think of me as being so capable (God only gives us...).
However, it is with this in mind that I can have the confidence to keep on improving, because much improvement is absolutely necessary.

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