20 Years and Counting

20 years together, two decades, seventy-three hundred days, however you want to list it. It’s a number that a lot of people strive for in a relationship. For us, it’s just another day.

It’s amazing that our journey has continued trucking along for this long. I could not ask for a better partner to call my wife. I can only imagine the life we will have together as our adventure continues. Happy anniversary Destiny, I love you always and forever!

Mother’s Day Minus Mom

This past Mother’s Day was the first Mother’s Day without my mom. Surprisingly, I handled it pretty well. I spent the entire day with my beautiful wife, celebrating her with some movies, food, and a couple gifts. It was a great day all around and I am so happy I was able to pull it off without breaking down, because let’s be honest, my mom being gone was on my mind the entire day. I knew I had to be strong, this day is not about me or about my loss, it’s about celebrating the amazing mother of my two crazy kiddos.

After waking up just before my wife I went upstairs and woke up the kids and had them help me wrap the Mother’s Day gifts they made and helped me pick out. We ended up making an adorable photo book with lots and lots of photos from last year. The kids also made a bunch of cards and pictures to fill up her gift bag. When she finally woke up we surprised her with her presents and then we relaxed and watched some movies while finishing up a couple of illustration projects we were working on the night before. For lunch we ventured down to Jersey Mike’s (we really need one closer) and enjoyed a ridiculously delicious sandwich.

The kids were amazing all day, they picked up after themselves, didn’t fight, and even went to bed on time. It was a pretty good day, although the weather sucked, it was a nice day celebrating an amazing mother.

By the end of the night I was exhausted and ready to crash. We had a full day and it was time to shut down. What sucked was that it took me forever to fall asleep. Laying there quiet it’s easy to get into your own head and have those thoughts that you have held back all day just unleash themselves on your mind, of course right before it’s time to sleep too. So I ended up sleeping like crap. I woke up tired and groggy. Whatever, I will push through and own Monday!

I still miss my mom as I am sure I always will. It just kind of sucks sometimes. Like recently, I really needed someone to talk to and I pretty much had no one. I had to solve my problem on my own. It’s not the first time nor will it be the last time, but it was harder this particular time because mentally, I had to push through.

Even at 37 years old I still needed advice from an “adult” and that person I wanted to talk to was not there and I need to remember that they will never be there again. My self-doubt will be all over the place while I figure out how to put my shattered self back together. In the end I am sure I will be okay, but it takes time, a clear head, and being honest with myself. Which I am trying to do, but I got to tell you, it’s hard. A mom is the one that tells you that your crappy drawing is a work of art and hangs in on the fridge, she boosts your confidence even when you’re acting a fool. I miss my mom, and while I made it through Mother’s Day, I know it’s not going to get any easier not having her around and I will continue to do my best in making sure she is never forgotten.

What Does It Take To “Keep the Edge” When You’re a Parent?

Of all the things that occur to our outlook when we become parents, one of the biggest concerns could be that we are just losing our edge. Becoming a dad, for all of the most wonderful things that come as a result of it, could cause you to worry about turning into some sort of old fuddy-duddy, and are losing the inherent thing that makes you you! But you’re not the only one, but it comes to keeping your edge, it’s not necessarily about buying a car that exudes style, or wearing “younger” clothes, but about making sure that you differentiate yourself. How can we do this? 

Have Little Components of Style, Although You Need to Be Sensible

If you are worried that becoming a dad means you’ve got to be “safety first” in every single way, it doesn’t stop you from getting little components of style in a subtle way. Take your car; if you are concerned that you’ve got to get a family station wagon, is there anything you can do to spruce it up? Something like alloys may look a little bit jarring on a family station wagon, but you can still purchase a vehicle that is safe, while also suiting your personality in spades. And while alloys are prone to damage, you can still use suppliers like Platinum Wheel Repairs to fix them up. Needless to say, the little components of style do not need to leave you.

Don’t Follow the Herd 

If you are someone who is constantly worried about losing your edge and settling into old-age pastimes, you don’t need to do what every other parent is doing. You need to follow your own journey. This could mean doing something that no other parent does or choosing a style of fashion that may be frowned upon in parents your age. But the most important lesson we can all learn is to be ourselves. Everybody tells us that we need to give in to old age and start being more sensible, and to an extent, this is true. However, we must remember that if we want to be our own person. We have to follow our instincts and do the things that feel right for us. 

Don’t Even Try to Keep up With Your Child! 

This is the biggest lesson for any parent. We might believe that in order to have some sort of edge, that we need to remain youthful, but the reality is that this looks like we are trying too hard. If you want to retain an edge as a parent, it’s not about trying to keep up with any form of trend, because this will only make you look more desperate. If you want to keep your edge but you are still looking to be sensible, all you need to do is be yourself. This may sound like some sort of cop-out, but the fact of the matter is that if you worry that you are losing touch as soon as you become a dad, you are better off trying to keep up with the only trendsetter that matters in your life: yourself!

Keeping Safe On The Road With Kids

A road journey with kids is an exciting experience but it can also be quite dangerous. You need to ensure that you are taking the right steps to guarantee that your kids are safe when you’re out on the road. Here are some of the possibilities that we recommend you keep in mind here. 

Use Window Protectors

One of the first options we recommend is that you do use window protectors. With the right window protectors, you will be able to guarantee that there isn’t an issue with the sun glaring through the windows. This can be an absolute nightmare and may even lead to skin damage. It’s important to protect your children’s skin and when they’re in the car this is always going to take more than just sunscreen. Window protectors can also ensure that your kids don’t get too hot on the journey. 

Avoid Distractions

Parents will often have to find the right balance between keeping kids entertained on car journeys and ensuring that they don’t become a distraction while driving. Our first recommendation is that you don’t have music too loud on a car journey. If your child is listening to music or watching a movie in the back do consider giving them a pair of headphones. There are headphones available that are more comfortable for young children to wear and fit like a headband. 

If your child is sitting in the front of the vehicle, then they shouldn’t be watching a movie that is in your line of sight. This can be a massive distraction for you. 

Stopping By The Road

There are multiple reasons why you might need to stop at the side of the road. Your car could break down and if that’s the case then you need to make sure that you keep your kids under control while you wait for the towing service. You can’t let them run around as this can be incredibly dangerous. You might also want to think about keeping them inside the car while you wait if it is safe to do so. 

Checking The Car

Finally, you do need to make sure that you are completing the right checks before you head out in your car. There is a range of checks that you need to keep in mind here. One example would be the tires. If your tires aren’t inflated to the right level this can be a major safety hazard. It can mean that you have lower levels of grip on the road. It’s easy to check if your tires are at the right pressure by giving them a firm kick. 

We hope this helps you understand everything you need to know to guarantee that you are safe on the road with your kids. In doing so, you can avoid a potential disaster scenario where your kids or injured or experience issues while you are out on a car journey. Remember, it’s easy to forget how dangerous a car can be if you fail to handle it the right way. 

This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.