My child as a helper.
Mandy as my great helper.
I feel like my oldest daughter is putting a burden on herself to make sure that my wife and I were able to understand our surroundings by her trying to interpret everything people wanted to say to us. She can do sign language so well that people think her as a deaf person even though she is a hearing person. As much as I am proud of her, it really saddens me that she automatically takes up the responsibility to make sure my life is easier as a deaf / hard of hearing person, father, and even neighbor. What hurts me even more is that she's only Seven years old!
So as a father who cannot hear well, I did my best to let her know that she should be a kid and enjoy her childhood. I want her to have friends, go on field trips, things that kids should do. But instead, she writes, reads books, listens to her younger siblings to make sure they are okay, even though I can hear pretty well with my hearing aids, she's the first one that tells me right away when they are fighting, gotten hurt, or even crying. She's the first one that comforts her baby sister when she have a nightmare or when the baby sister wakes up early in the morning and just spend time with her. It's amazing how kids adapt to deaf parents so quickly that it makes me want to become hearing. No child should be responsible for the parents. They can help, but not to a point where it takes over their childhood.
When I got my new digital hearing aids, my goodness! I can hear the birds, the crickets, the frog mating! Wow! I was like, " What the heck is that sound coming from?". My daughter would giggle and tell me what those sounds were. Oh Lord, i am grateful for my oldest daughter. She's a lifesaver! She's a blessing! I don't tell her how much I appreciate her as often as I should.
I can be a hard man for my family to put up with. But I let them know that I love them so much. I would do anything to make their life easier and enjoyable. So how do I improve myself as a father, husband, and neighbor? I pray, repent and read the Word of God.
I always study the meaning of Love in the Book of 1 Corinthians of Chapter 13 verses 4-10
There a few things I tried to remember in my heart.
Love is kind, doesn't envy others, doesn't have ego, don't behave rudely, always truthful, helpful, and have an understanding heart.
The more I study those words on love, the more I realized that my wife and children have those characteristics much more than I do. They are loving and full of grace. I can have temper by being frustrated or I can just watch sport or do some chatting online instead of spending time with my family and enjoying their laughter and their presence.
Fathers, don't think that God gave us children to educate them or become workers in the family . God gave us children to enjoy them, embrace them and love them. They are our gifts from the Most High. Even though my wife always said to me, "you are a great father!",. I know my heart. My fatherhood isn't perfect but I can do better! I want my daughter to be a child, not a worker. She's my baby and I want her to be a child of love and joy.
So why am I writing this now? What motivates me to write this? I went to a show called "Rise and Shine" at her school to see her perform. She has a part in the show where she tell her names and what she wants to be. At the same time, the teacher wanted her to sign. As I watched her sign, it's amazing how well she was able to accomplish what she needed to do. After she finished her part, she continued to sign! "What in the world?", I thought to myself. She was interpreting the rest of the other kids part for me so that I can understand the program. I was thinking to myself, "Mandy, you don't have to do this!" but she smiled and signed away! To me, she got pure love. A love that is closest to Christ's love for all of us. So after the show was over, she came over to me and smiled. I told her how proud I was and that I am blessed to have her as my daughter.
I pray that all my four girls are blessed, full of life and follow their dreams. I want them to enjoy their childhood and not be a workers for my wife and I. They deserve much better than me and I will do everything in my prayers and strength to see them grow up in the way of the Lord.
Here's my prayer:
Father, I thank you for my daughters. I pray that you will bless them with health, wisdom, and understanding hearts. I ask of you to give them a life of joy and peace. Help them to continue to walk with Christ and bring more happiness and laughter into their lives. Give them more than what I have had and allow them to be prosper as their souls prosper. Amen.