Let Him Be Dad

The best parenting advice I ever received was from a friend and neighbor with a son only a few months older than mine.

Living in military housing is a unique experience.  Since rank and family size are the determining factors in the type of housing you are offered, you live surrounded by people in the same life stage.  It offers you a wide variety of opinions and experiences to draw from when you encounter a new challenge.  Such as deployment.  Or a new baby.

At least four babies were born to families on that little alley in Hawaii during the three years we lived there.  And there were toddlers and elementary age kids galore.  Not to mention, all the friends at church having babies. (We announced that we were expecting just in time to extend an 8-year streak of continual pregnancies in our congregation.)

So the tips and tricks and words of wisdom were plentiful. But of all the advice I received, the one nugget that stuck with me, and that I pass on every time I get a chance was this:  let him be Dad.

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Just Do It: When “Being Intentional” is Code for “Procrastination”

Abby was almost three weeks old the day Dave decided to screen in the porch.  We lived in base housing in Hawaii, with a nice little lanai on the back.  The trouble was, even though the weather was perpetually gorgeous, the flies were terrible.  Sitting outside was inevitably a short-lived endeavor.

So one day, with a newborn baby snoozing in the Pack-n-Play and a wife recovering from a C-section, my husband struck up the following conversation.

Dave: This porch would be so much nicer with a screen!

Me: Yeah, that would be nice!

That was the whole conversation.

The next thing I knew, he was scrounging through the junk drawer for his measuring tape.  After a few minutes huddled over a legal pad with a calculator, ruler, and pencil, he was in the car, off to the hardware store.

I couldn’t tell you how he did it, even though I sat there and watched the whole thing go down.  But by the end of the day, we had a screen hanging around our porch.  It was awesome.  And by that, I mean, I was literally in awe.

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Have a Hard Conversation

I’m an Enneagram 9, which is sometimes called The Peacemaker.  That’s a really positive way of saying that as a 9, my core need or desire is to avoid conflict at all costs.  What I’m learning is that there’s a difference between being a peacemaker and a peace KEEPER.

I can keep the peace amazingly. If I disagree with someone, I can hold my tongue all day. I can listen to them ramble on about their incorrect opinions and never once speak up.   When I get to the point that I can’t take it anymore, I simply find a way to remove myself from the situation.


This sounds all well and good, but the downside is what happens inside of me.  While I might not speak up and make them known on a regular basis, I do have strong feelings and opinions about things.  And stuffing them down doesn’t make them go away.  It just results in anxiety, and in worst case scenarios, actual physical illness.

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My Impromptu Social-Media Break

At 4:00 pm one random Friday, I deleted my social media apps.  After a few moments hesitation, I also deleted my Wood Block Puzzle app for good measure.

The hours leading up to that moment had been filled with intermittent scrolling, taking up longer and longer portions of my day.  There was nothing new to see on Instagram, nothing interesting to read on Facebook, and yet, seemingly without any ability to stop myself, I kept scrolling.

It was the thought “I don’t want to be doing this,” which finally penetrated my numb yet cranky brain and made me quickly, almost violently, swipe those little time-sucking apps into the trash bin.

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Coming Soon!

I’m so excited to have my own little corner of the internet to share in many, (many!) more words about how I’m struggling, learning, and growing in intentionality!

Launch Day is September 7!  In the meantime, join me on Instagram for the 35 Days of Intention Challenge where we are focusing on the baby steps we can take to be more intentional.  Each day I’m posting a prompt, and I’d love for you to follow along and share your own tips, tricks, and growth.

Thanks for stopping by. I’m glad you’re here, and I can’t wait to get to know you better!!


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