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Got to be there

Written By: Terry Foster | January 12, 2012

Filed Under: Family, Parenthood

My day was going smoothly. I’d gotten my work out of the way which meant there was plenty of time to see my son Brandon’s poetry reading in his class room. All the kids wore all black and berets and read poems they’d written. I told Brandon I would show up to listen.

But something came up. The newspaper called and a story I’d be working on for next week got pushed up. They wanted to run it the next day. I still had notes to go through, people to call and tapes to transcribe. It looks like there would be no poetry listening for me. There wasn’t enough time to pull this off and do my radio show later in the day.

But I made a promise and I did not want to break it. However, I never got an indication if it meant anything to Brandon for me to be there. I debated and decided to go hear my son read his poems. I snuck into the back of the classroom and waited for Brandon’s name to be called. When it was his turn he read a poem about math. He loves figures and numbers.

It was cute and we all snapped our fingers in applause so we did not disturb the rest of the classes.

A few minutes later one of his best friends read his poem. Two minutes after he finished his mother walked into the class room. He realized his mother did not hear him speak and he broke down in tears. I guess I made the right decision to go. All the work stuff worked out and it was important to be there for my son.

I talked to my wife Abs and she said there are a lot of tears in that school when parents are unable to attend plays, games and special events. I guess our kids do want us there. It means a lot. I know work is important but so are our children. It is really important to be there for them even for these fourth grade events.

Afterwards Brandon came up and hugged me. I told him I loved his poem and he smiled.

I made the right choice.


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5 Responses to “Got to be there”

  1. Ryan Says:

    Good decision, Terry. I work with a lot of workaholics, and sometimes that’s the only way to move up the ladder. I think of it this way. I’ll never look back at my life and say “gee I wish I would have worked 2 hours late that day”. But I would look back and regret spending more time than necessary away from my kids, and missing a moment of them growing up. It goes by too fast, buddy.


  2. Darlene Says:

    Proud of you T.Foster! Job commitments are important but times with your children create precious memories which can never be replaced. Too many children are hurt by parents not willing to sacrifice a bit to show them them care! You’re the best!


  3. Jeff Says:

    Great Read Terry! I have a son just a year older than Little B (based on school Grade) and I know it’s always important to him that My wife and I attend his events. Props to you on being a great dad.

    Dig the blog and the show and make sure to keep giving Mike lots of Crap, it makes for great Radio when his head is exploding. Long time listener and a new blog reader.



  4. Louis Says:

    Good choice Terry…
    I’m a divorced parent and workaholic..I own 3 bars and my children’s school is over an hour away from where I live…these circumstances make it tough enough to try to be an active participant at my children’s school…on top of that I have a not so great relationship with my ex…I very rarely get to see my kids in action at school or their extra curricular activities..I do communicate with teachers but it just seems to always work out that I don’t get enough notice to attend events..it eats at me every day…when I do make a Halloween party or a Christmas party they are ecstatic…I keep trying to do more…keep it up…kids are the joy in our lives!!


  5. Drew Says:

    You put in perspective how much our children love their parents and seek their attention. I have an 11 month old, I can’t wait until he gets older so I can experience the many joys of parenthood to come. I used to be like Mike V and want nothing to do with having children. Now that I have one, I couldn’t imagine where I would be without him.


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