Sons and Fathers

I don’t write a ton about my husband, Adam. There are many reasons for this: he says fewer cute things than my kids, he rarely brings home cool artwork from work, etc. But the primary reasons I rarely write about him is because he is fully capable of writing about himself, and rarely chooses to do so. But I’ll break my self-imposed embargo today to talk about him, because it’s Father’s Day, and it’s a time where we sit down to say the things we think so often and say so rarely.

Four generations of Flynn men: three fathers and one baby

My husband has had some great fathering role models. His father was also a good father. He talks to me often about the walks they took on warm Saudi nights with his dad and his dog – talking about everything and nothing. I miss Mike a lot – today especially. He was always convinced that we were the most amazing, the best. I often think of how proud of me Mike would be, which says a lot about how supportive he was of me while he was here. Mike died four years ago, but he remains with us in memory and thought.

My dad

I’m fortunate that my Dad is still around and doing cool stuff. I talked to him this morning, and his newest book is doing well. He did a book signing this weekend! But my Dad was always there – at every sporting event, schlepping me from location to location, teaching me how to drive or reminiscing about the layout of the streets in Seattle in 1969. He reaches out every time there’s wild weather in my area to make sure I know. He usually knows my forecast better than I do!

All this is to say, there are a lot of great dads in our lives. But the one I see the most of, whose work I can most appreciate, is my husband.

The day my husband became a father

Adam is a great father to our two sons – whose very looks are stamped unmistakably on his boys. There are so many things they do together: he’s their teacher in aikido, their “tickle and snuggle time” favorite, their morning-breakfast-short-cook, and their gamemaster. He is with them every day, and in every way, in sickness and in health. I love watching him wrestle with the boys. (80% of my family pictures involve the three of them locked in some manner of combat).

A hike on another day. I didn’t bring the camera yesterday.

Yesterday we went for a lovely family hike in the Breakheart Reservation, where Adam and the boys talked about snakes, beetles, optimum swinging mechanics and other related phenomenon. Today, we decided to spend Father’s Day being a family by going to the Museum of Fine Arts to check out the Samurai exhibit. (And the mummies. Because Dude! Mummies!) Once again, I got to watch my husband with my sons – explaining canopic jars, pointing out historical references, sharing the enthusiasm of the kids. It was – it always is – a pleasure and a joy.

Thank you, Adam, for the joyful and loving time you spend with our sons every day. I can only hope that they grow into men and kind, as loving, and as fun as you.

Explaining Roman coins

Pictures of today’s journey to the past can be found here! We had a great time at the MFA!

On my own, pretending he’s beside me

So I have a secret for you. I actually really love my husband. Shhh… I know it’s not kosher to be madly in love with the father of my sons, but there you have it. The truth is out.

This morning I woke up without complaint at 7. (This is how you know it’s really love.) I got myself and my boys ready to go. We drove to the airport, where I spent half an hour saying goodbye to my husband. From the drama, you’d think he was being deployed to Iraq and I wouldn’t see him for another year and he stood a good chance of being killed. In reality, his company runs a big conference every year and every salaried employee is expected to be present and help out. My highly trained, brilliant engineer of a husband is spending 7 days in Nashville doing coat-check. I haven’t decided whether this is a brilliant team building technique, a misguided attempt at cost savings (sorry, engineer salary + travel expenses = much cheaper to hire a local), or some combination thereof.

Regardless, he is gone until Friday and I am missing him sorely already. Let me say first that I really, really don’t know how single parents do it. I don’t have to show up to work. (Actually I had this giddy moment of freedom when I realized that I could be gone as long and as far as the contents of my diaper bag could get me. For a split second I tried to figure out how far I could get and come back. Then I remembered I didn’t have my cell charger….) I don’t have huge monetary constraints. (Hello takeout!) Heck, Grey’s daycare will take him as a drop in which is very likely what I’ll do once the week returns. But man, it’s hard to wrangle two kids by myself. Walking somewhere and not carrying anything or anyone is a huge luxury. You should’ve seen me wrestling it all at IKEA. I couldn’t buy the tasty carbonated beverages due to a tragic lack of hands. The meatballs were purchased with a VISA and at the cost of future feeling in my right thumb. And Grey and Thane were actually being really, really good!

When I was doing my anticipatory dreading of this, I worried about how I would handle the boys when they’re doing their tandem weeping/screaming routine. Granted, entertaining and tending to my sons is definitely a challenge. But I think the hard part will be the loneliness. I was already feeling pretty lonely, spending my days in the company of two people younger than most of my jeans and Spongebob Squarepants. But at least my husband would come home at night and I would deluge him with all the thoughts that had piled up in my head during the day. But I don’t actually have to talk to another adult in person until my brother arrives sometime on the Thursday/Friday border. Of course I will. Tomorrow is church. Monday a friend is going with me to the Museum of Science with the boys. I’m quite sure other things will appear on my schedule.

But mostly, I miss my husband. I really like him. I like doing things with him. My sons are also his sons, and I can lean on him as much as is needed to do those things which need doing.

May my husband return to me soon.

My handsome husband
My handsome husband