I had a rough day at work this week. It was one of those days that when my wife asked me if I wanted to talk about it, my response was, “Not in front of the kids.” In the grand scheme of things, it was nothing major, but it upset me nonetheless. I also rode the bus home that day, so I had about an hour or stewing in my own anger before I opened the front door.
I got home and went into the kitchen area to put my lunch container in the sink. My wife was helping our daughter with her homework, so I decided not to bother them at the moment. Instead I went to the living room and sat down on the couch. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. Maybe I would read a book. Maybe I would fire up the Playstation. Maybe I would just sit there and stare at the ceiling. Before I could really figure it out, I heard a knock come from the door. This is fairly unusual, so I checked to make sure that the kids were out of the room and then assumed the “chest puffed out, I will protect this house” stance. When I opened the door, however, there was no one there. Then I heard the knock again and realized it was coming from the bathroom which is on the other side of the wall right by the door.
It turns out that my mom was giving my 2 year old son a bath. He heard me come home and wanted to show me something. I walked in, and he flashed me his cloud-clearing smile and asked me to come closer. I knew he was up to something, but I couldn’t resist that smile. I got down on my knees and leaned in close. In that cute way that only 2 year olds can, he completely forgot what he was going to do. He just looked at me with a slightly puzzled look on his face. Then, my mom gave him a clue. “Squirt him with your fish!” The big smile came back, and out of nowhere, he brought a bath toy fish and squirted me full in the face with water.
I pretended that I was astonished by what just happened which brought out the trademark Little Dude giggle. Then, he said, “Daddy, come here closer.”
I told him, “No, you’re just going to squirt me again.”
With a twinkle in his eye, he said, “No, I need tell you somefing.”
I knew what was coming, but I leaned in anyway. Once again, the fish flies out and sprays me right in the face. We played this game a few more times until me and my mom were both pretty soaked. By the time I left the bathroom, I had to go change my shirt and wipe my face off. I did all of this with a smile on my face though.
I was still upset later on when I told my wife about work, and I still had to deal with it the next day, but for a good chunk of time, none of that mattered. Our son had managed to turn my mood around in less than 30 seconds. It’s moments like this that make you realize how awesome it is to be a father. There’s nothing like it, and I wouldn’t give it up for the world.