Someone I love very much had pointed out that I have a tendency to be a grumpy old man.
I’m not sure why I’ve so easily slipped into the persona of my least favorite of Snow White’s Dwarfs, but being called out on it by the person whose opinion matters the most to me, made me realize that something needed to be done.
Someone else I love very much is my Dad. I’m so proud that I’m named after my father, and I’ve always aspired to be like him.
My Dad was the easiest going person I’ve ever met. He was always smiling, putting people at ease, and could make a complete stranger feel like he was his best friend. My Dad never raised his voice, was incredibly patient with a curious son who was forever asking annoying questions, and always supported me.
Growing up, I couldn’t wait to have kids of my own because I wanted to be the kind of father to them that my Dad was to me. To this day, I still long to be a father simply so that I could pass on my father’s legacy to a new generation and keep his name alive.
Although, to my chagrin, I’ve had a lot of push back from the women in my life about ever naming my son Austin.
For some reason, they have a serious issue with hanging the albatross of “the third” around the little guy’s neck. I don’t get what the big deal is. I’ve been a “Junior” for most of my life, and it’s never been an issue.
The point that I wanted to make is that it’s always been my goal to live up to my Dad’s name and make him proud.
With that in mind, I don’t understand how I’ve turned into a grumpy, negative, let’s just be frank…prick.
This version of me that skulks around The House on the Hill, hiding out from the world, and scaring away the people I love, in no way resembles Big Austin, the man I say I’ve chosen to emulate.
So what the hell is going on here? How did I fall down this rabbit hole of doom and gloom? Why do I put on an ugly mask and hide my true self when I finally step out from my fortress to face the world?
I’m desperately seeking the answers to these questions, and I can confidently say that I have made some progress. I can definitely sense a change not only in me, but also in the way that people react to me.
Not as many people run for cover when they see me coming, and that really has helped me in my quest to become the man that I know is trapped inside and really wants to get out and enjoy life.
I really am trying, Modern Philosophers. Please be patient with me. I’m on a Hero’s Journey to live my life more like my hero.
I know my Dad would still love me if he were around to see the man I’ve become, but I’m upset I haven’t become more like him.
The idea of living up to a name inspired this week’s column on The Good Men Project. It was also helped along by my epic struggle to come up with a name for the column. Maybe my failure with names means it’s a good thing I haven’t had any children yet.
You can check out this week’s column on The Good Men Project by clicking on the link below. For the record, I named the column Whoopie Pies & Yankees!