My name is Jason and I live in the small seaside town of Swampscott, Massachusetts. I’ve been a dad now for fifteen years. So, I’m a little late jumping into writing a blog about fatherhood, but I figured better late than never.
I’m a novelist and blogger for the Huffington Post for a while as well as a few magazines. I’ve been a writer pretty much all my life, so eventually writing a blog about being a father and modern man seems like a pretty natural progression. My kids love to joke that every-time I meet someone I say “Hi, I’m Jason, I’m an author.” So I felt I had to get that out in the first two paragraphs just to poke fun at them. The truth is, if they knew how much work went into writing a book, they would brag about it too. Haha!
Here’s a little backstory about me: I am the father of two amazing boys. I would imagine most fathers think their kids are amazing, but I really am constantly amazed by my kids. Don’t get me wrong, they irritate me sometimes, but that is kind of par for the course. I’m sure I irritate them as well. The truth is, I love them with all my heart and would move heaven and earth to help them.
I am divorced from their mother but we keep a good line of communication (most of the time) when it comes to the boys and I am grateful every day that they have such a good mom. I will admit that the divorce was very hard for the boys and also for myself from a parenting aspect. It is incredibly difficult to live with your children every day, see them wake, put them to bed and then instantly not have them with you every day.
I’m not ashamed to admit that I remember those first few days in my new apartment, crying myself to sleep, yearning to be with my boys. As my relationship with my ex-wife deteriorated (over a period of 5-7 years), I focused harder every day on my relationship with the kids as a distraction to my daily problems. In hindsight perhaps I should have instead focused on repairing my relationship with her, but that’s water under the bridge at this point. A person makes choices, for better or for worse and one must learn to accept those choices and see the good in them. Those first few months it was very hard to see the light in my decisions. But, as the weight slowly lifted off my shoulders, I found that the time that I had with my boys was even more critical. The moments were not as plentiful as when I had lived with them 24/7 and so I focused on enrichment, going to the museum of science, camping, day trips, watching movies, etc.
After a while, I started to realize that I was falling into the “fun parent” trap, something I had been actively trying to avoid. So, I slowly tried to bring the focus back to balancing fun and school and educational enrichment. It’s a hard balance as a single parent and even harder when you don’t have a strong educational background. Slowly though I have found that balance and nowadays I focus on also trying to ensure that I’m teaching the boys life skills (like cleaning, bathing, cooking, etc.).
A few years ago I met the incredible woman that I am happy to call my best friend and partner in crime (yes, that is figurative). We have discussed the idea of starting a life together and in turn, it has become another chapter in my life. The boys like her (most of the time) and she adores them (most of the time), so who could ask for more? Life is good.