The start of the new school year is rapidly approaching. Fears of new classrooms and classmates are building, while we adults are trying to navigate these rocky conversations with our children.
The Dadass Podcast recently had on Ariana Hoet, PhD, clinical director for On Our Sleeves at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, who provided a lot of meaningful ways we as parents can begin making a difference now. Hoet works in Pediatric Primary Care where she serves primarily Latino and Somali immigrant children. She is also a clinical assistant professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatric Psychology and Neuropsychology at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and The Ohio State University.
She recommends starting these conversations 2-3 weeks before school. Whether your kids are going into preschool or high school, begin asking open ended questions to truly see how your kids are feeling. These questions open it up for true feelings and thoughtfulness in responses.
One of the most downloaded resources on the On Our Sleeves website is their conversation starter. We’ve linked two resources for overall conversation starters and for back-to-school conversations to help lead conversations at home.
To hear the full conversation with Dr. Hoet and all her tips related to going back to school, building empathy within your kids and more click here.
On the 84th episode of The Dadass Podcast we chat with professional brewer and operations manager for Wolf’s Ridge Brewing Adam Hickernell. This craft beer artisan and girl dad talks all things beer, grilling and starting a hot sauce company, Burrito Belly Hot Sauce, with his wife.
On the episode we taste and learn all about Daybreak, a nationally recognized coffee vanilla cream ale; AJ's Umbrella Ride, their first foeder-aged golden lager; and Chocolate Dire Gorgon. We also learn of Adam’s longtime dream to brew a cold IPA set to be served in the coming weeks at Wolf’s Ridge.
Between discussions of his family, being married for 10 years (together for 18) with his wife, we learn about what it’s like to work with his wife on a passion project. Our taste buds are lit up with flavors and heat as we try three different hot sauces.
Recently I’ve felt like a fraud as a father. Maybe you feel the same way. Maybe it’s just me.
As work picks up, and the sleep at night never seems to be enough, I honestly feel I’ve been going through the motions as a parent and as a husband. I’ve felt at time numb to what’s really going on. While the stress builds, and we avoid stepping on little army men and race cars throughout our home, I’ve found that I’ve lacked a true sense of what it means to be fully present.
At work, I feel I go a thousand miles a minute up to the point that I am forced to come home to go even faster to work in dinner, play time and a bath, just to get the little guy to bed with only two renditions of “Peace on Earth” being sung. It’s a lot and these moments go by and right unto the next. I don’t know how those of you with two or three kids do it.
At the same time, we’ve gotten hooked on (myself included!) rewatching Sing 2 on Netflix. If you haven’t experienced this animated film, it’s brilliantly done with a rockin’ soundtrack, knockout cast and surprisingly awesome storyline. I’ll just drop this little gem right here for you.
There’s a scene where Johnny the gorilla is singing an epic version of Coldplay’s “Sky Full of Stars” while battling a villain. He gets beaten down unexpectedly only to be encouraged by a friend to get back up and finish. He gets up, gathers himself and finishes the number acapella, while beating his challenger. Our son loves this version of the song, and the soundtrack includes the full rendition of this number. At this point in time, I can definitively tell you how many times you can play the song on a trip to Papa's house or the nearby mall, if that paints a picture how many times we've heard it.
There is a part in the scene where the friend begins to bang on a trash can, which sounds much like a drum. Perfectly on cue when this happens, our little guy asks from his car seat, “What’s that noise?” Like clockwork, even on the fifth playing of the song, we get asked. It’s as super cute as it’s super annoying.
But it’s moments like that where we can now share in a moment, we can sing a song and live in the same moment that I realize the need in my life: the need to just be.
Who cares if we have an earworm of a song stuck in our head. It’s a moment we’ll one day think back and cherish. When we watch the movie years down the road, we’ll relive a moment. A particular moment that outweighs the baggage I’m unfortunately carrying and bringing home at this moment and that’s only worth a sky full of…wait, what’s that sound?!
-Matt Lofy, The Dadass and CBUS Dads contributor
CBUS Dads is a community of central Ohio area dads balancing an active lifestyle with being an involved parent. A Saturday for us may involve enjoying morning t-ball, lunch at a new local spot and an evening at a summer festival with our families. We may live downtown, in the suburbs or somewhere between, but our common thread is that we continue to experience the community we love - now as parents.