Raising a Son

What’s up guys? Welcome to the Five Minute Fatherhood. Have you ever had that feeling that man, I really, really would love to raise a son? I’d love to have a son. And I think sometimes in this culture where we’re all getting more and more sensitive to any inequality within gender, I think that we can sort of crush this kind of desire. But there’s something really natural about this desire. And there is so many amazing things about daughters, and we’re going to have full podcasts on, and we have on the incredible gift it is to raise a daughter. But we’re not afraid to weight into the fact that these are different kind of experiences for us as dads. And a lot of times dads do experience this desire to want to have a son. Where does that come from? And are there any clues to that? Is that something you should resist?

And probably one of my favorite American authors of all time, John Steinbeck actually wrote a little piece on this in one of his books-

He’s a legend.

And I want to read this to you because I think he sort of is circling this idea in a really interesting way. He says, “Why do men, like me, want sons?” He wondered, this is one of the characters in his book. “It must be because they hope in their poor beaten souls that these new men who are their blood will do the things that they were not strong enough, nor wise enough, nor brave enough to do. It is rather like another chance at life.” And I don’t know if you feel it that kind of like if you hear something like that it might rise up from some deep place within you.

I remember the first time I really thought about this idea was I was in Jerusalem at a bar mitzvah and I watched a grandfather, this is such a cool experience., we weren’t even a part of the bar mitzvah. We just were going to a restaurant and there was probably 200 people, most of them from America all flew in for this one, 13-year-old boy’s bar mitzvah. And at, probably, the pinnacle of it we were just overhearing what was happening. The grandfather of this young 13-year-old boy puts his hand on his grandson, and he recites this incredible poem over him. And I’ll never forget the last words of the poem said something like, “Because you live, I will never die because a part of me lives on in you.” And when he said that, I was like-

That was awesome.

Ancient cultures that just gets it. So this is what’s going on inside of us. God has given us the gift of really living on, our piercing into the future through our children. And there is a unique experience of that that you get to have through a daughter, and a unique experience you get to have of that through a son. And I love what Steinbeck says here.

Yeah. You know what’s really funny and how that line you just said of that prayer, which is incredible? I feel like we tend culturally in the West to be okay with that in like movies, or superhero stories, or something like that of kind of like when someone’s dying like, “Oh, I’ll live on forever with you or in you.” But it’s because we’re so individualistic in our own culture we don’t actually take that into real life. When it’s like that actually should be a real life thing, that you are holding your entire generational legacy inside of you. And there is, obviously, a mixture of blessing and curse in there but, specifically, if you’ve come from someone who is like a patriarch of that nature that says that, a vision of love, of blessing, man, what a gift.

And what would it look like for us to actually not shy away from that thinking where some blank slate? We’re actually not a blank slate and we can actually live into our story of that generational story that’s inside of us. And man, I absolutely love that. And then, I think that plays, and tells, and goes the direction of then, also why not just having a daughter’s important and a blessing, but then why also having a son has that particular blessing as well. And what a picture, and I think I’ll end with even saying that one more time because it was so good. “Because you live, I will never die,” he said, “Because a part of me lives on in you,” so dads take that with you today.

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