Adopting a New View of Parenting

15 03 2011

We’re in the midst of ‘Spring Break.’ An American rite of passage. And I’m staying as far away from the action as I can.

Been there. Done that.

As a college prepster at Troy, my fraternity brothers and I made the annual trek to PCB to engage in the festive atmosphere. We would hit the beach during the day, chug a lot of beer, talk about sports and gaze at the girls before getting cleaned up for a night at the clubs.

Places like the Boardwalk and the Summit are still etched in my mind. I was such a dork back then. I wasn’t much into physical fitness in college, not like I am now. I was more concerned with equations and hypothesis, particularly when it came to sports teams.

So, I kept my shirt on at the beach. No need to let — as some of my fraternity brothers dubbed it — “the bird chest” out of its cage.

They say college is all about self discovery. I discovered, thanks to my fraternity, the differences and similarities that bring young men together. Beer also breaks down a lot of barriers.

These days, most of my fraternity brothers are married with children. I wonder what it’s like.

Tonight, I attended a presentation on adoption in the State of Florida. The attorney, a Harvard educated Jewish woman from New York, explained the situation for same-sex couples and for the first time, I thought long and hard about fatherhood.

There are so many children in the State’s system in need of loving and caring homes. Crime and poverty have left innocent children yearning for a positive parental environment. This being another discovery from the campaign trial.

The fact that I am no longer drawn to the beach parties or long nights clubbing is a sign that I am ready to begin a new chapter in my life. My relationship with David has truly made me wiser and healthier and I would like nothing more than to continue on that path through mentorship.

Through the course of the campaign, as I visited community after community hit hard by the recession, I came to realize how privileged my childhood was. My parents made many sacrifices in order for my brother and I to live comfortably. This I now see clearly. By the same token, thanks to my travels and adventures as a journalist, I am keenly aware of the dangers out there and influences that can lead to broken homes.

So, in conclusion, if I can make a difference — for the better — in the life of a disadvantaged child, then I feel it is my duty as a humble public servant to volunteer.

And with this I have graduated from ‘Spring Break’ as we have known it.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Actions

Information

2 responses

15 03 2011
Don Harris

Part of that sounded familiar — the part about not wanting to take off my shirt at the beach (or in gym class) when I was young. But the part about wanting kids — I substitute taught briefly while I was between jobs. That pretty well took care of any desire for more contact with kids than I already have with my niece and nephews.

16 03 2011
david altermatt

John, I so appreciate your honesty and strength in identifying where you are in your journey. i would love to participate in the process of adoption with you. As for don’s comment, substitute teaching is a far cry from adoption, as far as heaven is from hell. I would rather be waterboarded than to substitute teach.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: