Being a Dad
By Michael Eagan
September 24, 2000
As I was waking my children up for school last Friday, Isaiah rolled over to face me and groaned. His eyes were puffy and his hair clung to his forhead with sweat, and he said to me those three little words no father likes to hear: Daddy, I'm sick. My heart sank. I picked up his limp, warm body, set him gently in my lap, and gave him a long, deserved spanking. I had suspected for a few weeks that Isaiah may have been touching himself at night, and this finally confirmed it. I explained to him that a cold like this was God's punishment for doing wicked things with his penis, and after a prayer, I sent him on his way to school with a note for his teacher to read to the class explaining that he was a masturbator.
Now, if I were a man who didn't have a close relationship to God and a narrow interpretation of the Bible, I would probably have carted my son off to the local HMO to see a pediatrician and then fork over an outrageous co-payment for penicillin or some other such snake oil that doesn't work one-tenth as well as Christian prayer and public shaming. But fortunately, God's love and guidance has helped me see though such corporate chicanery. My hard-earned money belongs in the church collection plate, not in some bottle of antibiotics for a brat who can't resist rubbing his genitals like a zoo monkey.
I believe that giving your children drugs of any kind is a slippery slope to destruction. I resolved way back when my beautiful wife courageously had my first son Zachary the natural way that no child of mine would ever be taking drugs for any reason. It's too risky. Today it's Benadryl, tomorrow it could be marijuana.
I wish more fathers would realize that a healthy dose of religious faith and a firm spanking or two is all it really takes to get a child out of bed and ready for school. Unfortunately, we live in an era where television tells women that they can tell their husbands what to do, and thus the authority of the father to make medical decisions regarding his own children is sometimes usurped. I am not immune. Recently, whether to abide by God's Law as set forth in the Bible or call a secular doctor became a point of contention between my wife and me.
Two months ago, my daughter Kimmy woke up in the middle of the night screaming that her legs were numb. I simply reassured her that numb legs were normal punishment for sinful girls and she would be fine after she dragged herself to the school bus in the morning and prayed extra hard during the class's moment of silence. My wife, however, not being fully awake, spoke without first getting permission and suggested we call an overpriced "expert" who would prescribe lots of expensive drugs and trips to the quack chiropractor. This put me in a position where I had to make a decision: I told Kimmy to do what I said and then I took my insolent wife downstairs and belted her a hard one for contradicting me in front of the children. Later I even had to give her a good poling to work off the stress she caused me just so I could get back to sleep.
Well, the old adage that God will never give a person more than he thinks they can handle was true for Kimmy that morning, and it's especially true now as she learns to navigate using her new wheelchair. It's difficult for her to maneuver through the narrow doorways in our house without pinching her fingers, and sometimes she has trouble keeping a six-pack on her lap all the way from the refrigerator to the couch, but she is getting much quicker lately. I've been timing her, and I enforce a firm rule that if I have to wait longer than three commercials for my cold beer, she gets spanked. And if my wife stupidly puts my beer on a shelf that's too high for Kimmy to reach, she gets spanked, too.
I may not have all the answers, but I have picked up three bits of wisdom though my experience that may help other fathers who are struggling with the tremendous responsibility of raising a family: First, setting boundaries and enforcing them is the most important part of being a man. Second, having principles and sticking to them is the most important part of being a Christian. Third, finding the time for constructive spankings when things go wrong is the most important part of being a dad.
I will be back next month with more family adventures to share. Until then, take care of yourselves and your families, and don't let the wife keep your dick in her purse.
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