I put my foot in my mouth again.
This time I was at a homeschool event and found myself chatting with a nearby mom I’d never met before.
At some point she said to me, “It’s very nice to see a dad doing all the teaching. So many fathers don’t have the patience to do that.”
I answered back with the obvious, “Very true. I know way too many dads who don’t have the patience to spend any time with their kids.”
And then I just kept droning on and on, which inevitably leads to me saying something unintentionally stupid.
“In fact, a lot of dads I know see their kids quite infrequently. It’s so sad. I just don’t understand why a father would allow himself to slowly become a stranger to his children. It’s tragic, these ‘stranger dads’ who spend maybe one day a week around their kids, if that. Work can’t be more important than family.”
Blah freakin’ blah, that’s me.
The mom suddenly had a sad look on her face and looked away, and that conversation ended as most do, with me thinking I just talk too much.
Later in the day, a friend told me about the woman I was talking to. Her husband works in another state, thousands of miles away, and gets home only a few times each year. Apparently it’s been very hard on the kids, but for some reason they can’t leave this area to join him.
I think I’ll start carrying a sandwich with me wherever I go. That way, when I find myself sitting next to someone I don’t know, I can shove enough food into my mouth so all I can do is smile and nod.