Becoming a 9 to 5 Dad

So here I am, a military vet with a BA in Education (and teaching certificate), staying home every day, cooking and cleaning, and taking care of my 15 month old son… And loving it.

However, this is not my first rodeo. I met my Rhonda online sometime in the middle of 2005. By the end of that same year, we found ourselves standing in a church before our family and friends. We were ‘nontraditional’ newlyweds because we had met later in life. I was in my late thirties and she was a few years younger. Rhonda and I both realized that if we were going to begin a family, we did not have much time to waste. In addition, we both had friends that had been trying to have children for years. Therefore, with great determination (and a big grin on my face), we began trying to conceive a child.

A few months later and with Rhonda’s support, I decided to go to college and earn a teaching degree. Having not been a student for quite some time, I was more than a little anxious. Nevertheless, within a few weeks I had found my academic stride and was making some headway in my studies. It was late October of 2006, I had successfully completed my midterms and was celebrating my fortieth birthday. Rhonda and I had originally planned to go out for some dark beer and Irish music. I received a text on my way out of class from Rhonda, explaining that she was exhausted and wanted to put off the party until the weekend. I was a little disappointed, but with midterms behind me, I still managed to smile all the way home. I walked into the house where Rhonda was waiting with a large flat box in her hands. It was a giant chocolate chip cookie, and written in orange icing was, “Happy Birthday Terry. P.S., you’re going to be a daddy!”

Changes were coming. My wife was working hard at a job in which she loved and was very successful doing. It was difficult and kept her extremely busy, but it involved helping and changing the lives of people in need, which provide a great sense of satisfaction to her. I, on the other hand, was in between careers. My day to day, to say the least, was much more accommodating. Therefore, when Jake came into the world, it made sense for me to stay at home during the day and take classes at night.

So there I was, a military vet and full-time college student, staying home every day, cooking and cleaning, and taking care of our son… And I wouldn’t have changed it for anything.

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