Friday, September 3, 2010

I Am That Dad: Guest Post and Giveaway

Allow me to introduce to you, Gavin, from I Am THAT Dad. Gavin is the creator of I am THAT dad. He has been riding the married wagon for 14 years and is dad to 3 kiddos (2 boys and one girl). I stumbled upon Gavins site one day through Twitter and was immediately captivated by what I was reading. Another dad that gets it! Best summarized by the line "The dad you want to be is the dad your kids need you to be".  I asked Gavin to guest post here about what it means to be "that dad" and what the title calls us to be. So, I would like to stop taking up time, and hand the steering wheel over to Gavin!

That Dad is one who’s ridiculous and resourceful actions stand out from the crowd in a way that no adjective can find a comfortable place between that and Dad. Only one’s own eyes can surmise what is occurring.

To further illustrate, you and your wife are walking through the park. You approach a man with a Baby Bjorn on his chest, diaper bag slung across his shoulder, toddler at his side and whatever additional accessories are required to support the demographic of children he is responsible for. With a pained look on this man’s face and beads of sweat appearing on his brow, you can take one of two descriptive approaches to point out your observations:
1. Empathy, as in “Look at that poor dad.”
2. Support, as in “Look at that dedicated dad.”
Your wife looks, acknowledges your assessment and everyone keeps walking.

Same walk in the park with your wife, this time you glance over and observe a group of kids surrounding a dad who is supplying each one with water balloons to hurl at one another. Nothing more is required other than you turning to your wife to remark, “Hey, check out That Dad!”

To understand the spirit of That Dad, one has to become familiar with That Guy. I lived a life according to That Guy rules whose ridiculous and resourceful actions stood out from the crowd. I’ve been “That Guy wearing an empty box of beer for a hat,” which is how I met my wife.  I’ve had a recurring stint as “That Guy who found obnoxious uses for inanimate objects in vacation photos.”   My favorite was a one time appearance as “That Guy who pushed a fully assembled BBQ a mile, from Home Depot to his house, because he did not want to build it and did not have a car big enough to haul it.”

Things changed when I became the father of two boys and a girl. Opportunities to be That Guy diminished.  I felt as if I needed to conform to some unknown standard of fatherhood where the measure of success was how well my kids behaved in public.  Where on earth did this sudden urge to give a crap about what others thought come from?  It was making me uptight, frustrated and just downright crazy.  It was turning me into a poor father as I was rightfully failing at being something I was not, and for what purpose, to please some illusive body of knowledge about fatherhood before pleasing my kids?  It was time for This Dad to stand out from the crowd again and become That Dad!

There’s a pretty simple formula to properly achieve That Dad status:

1. You’re not perfect.
2. Your kids are not perfect.
3. There are people that think you and your kids should be.
4. Screw ‘em!

There’s going to be enough that comes at you in your life and your kids’ lives that will be hard and can’t be avoided.  Your job is to prepare them for that. Equally, if not more important, is to show them how much fun and enriching life can be when you are true to yourself and don’t worry about what others think. The dad you want to be is the dad your kids need you to be.

If you ever shared an experience with your kids where you thought it was fun, your kids thought it was fun, there was at least one person you could think of that thought it was a bad idea, but you did it anyway, then you have been That Dad.  Leave a comment and tell us about it.

Thank you Gavin for sharing with The DaddyYo Blog! But WAIT!!! As if I wasn't honored enough that he chose to post for me, Gavin is also going to give away 3 "I am THAT Dad" T-Shirts!!! Rock out in all your dad glory, proudly proclaiming that you strive to be "that dad". The giveaway will run from now until next Friday, September 10th,  and when it is all said and done, I will choose 3 random dads to receive an "I Am THAT Dad" shirt. Here are the deets for the giveaway:

One entry for each of the following!

  • Leave a comment here about something you have done with your kids that made you "that dad"!

  • Tweet about the giveaway! Include the following: "I want to be THAT dad! #giveaway from @iamthatdad and @TheDaddyYoDude  (be sure to include the @'s to I can add the entry to the pot, and include link back to this post)

  • Follow @IAmThatDad on Twitter! Comment here and let us know you are following!

  • Become a fan of "I Am THAT Dad" on Facebook!  Once again, let us know by commenting here!

Thanks for stopping by today, and thanks to Gavin for sharing with The DaddyYo Blog and the 3 lucky winners of this giveaway!

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