When the boys were still babies, Mark and I watched other parents with their trials and tribulations.
After watching enough toddlers and preschoolers run to their mother’s arms when they were hurt — sometimes running right past father on the way — Mark decided it was important to him that our children be comforted as readily by him as by me.
He felt that he was at a disadvantage because I was the one with the breasts. Frankly, though, it wasn’t hard to to convince the boys that daddy’s hugs and kisses made the boo-boos go away, too. If something happened when Mark was around, he swept in and gave the lovin’ required. Sometimes I’d bring the band-aid and give it to Mark to apply.
Age plays with the memory, to be sure, but I cannot remember ever seeing any of our children, hurt and crying, and in Mark’s arms but reaching for me, instead.
I’m not exactly sure what it got us, but now that Mark is gone, I’m grateful for it.
Conscious parenting was all that was required.