Lessons Learned on Father’s Day

We were recently in Texas to see Amy’s family, and while we were there I realized I am now officially part of a different generation. My whole life it’s been the other grandkids and me, but now our children are the grandkids. This means I am where my parents and aunts and uncles were in all those family get-togethers when I was young. At which thought my mind recoils with “This is what it’s like to be the grownups in the family? That doesn’t make any sense! I don’t know anything!”

My whole life I’d subconsciously assumed that adults were adults because they’d spent years accumulating wisdom about humanity and knowledge about how the world functions. Turns out you just become an adult by getting older. They’ll let anyone into this club. I kept waiting for the day where I would slow down, begin exclusively watching the History Channel and old westerns I’d seen a million times while dozing in a big chair, and listening to oldies radio. While I was waiting, time sandbagged me. I now spend my time watching cartoons, whatever classic action movie is on HBO, playing video games with a guy I’ve been friends with since 1984, watching 90s music videos on MTV Classic and listening to “alternative rock” on Spotify. I have not, however, slowed down. I thought I was going to turn into my dad, but skinnier, while in fact I have turned into me, but older.

Anyway, we have been handed a magical baby who travels well and doesn’t complain and rolls with changes in his schedule and smiles at us when he wakes up. He was three months old yesterday and three months ago feels like an eternity. I know so much more about being a father now than I did then and I don’t even know what I don’t know yet. I don’t think I can put any of it into words. Sure, I can tell you how to adjust the straps in a car seat and best practices for diaper changes and what you can try if your baby is crying, but those are just trivia. That’s not being a parent. It’s a feeling and an experience. I was waiting to turn into a father, while in fact I have turned into me, but with more love in my life.

Colin Fisher is many things to many people, but mostly he’s an actor and writer.

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