By Guest Blogger Moose Lester

Being a father is by far the best job of all time!  Let us be honest, time truly does fly by. I can distinctly remember when my oldest, Jack, was born as if it was yesterday. Yet here I am, over 15 years later, realizing that time has gone by in a flash. A lot has changed in those 15 years: two more kids, coaching multiple sports, moving into two houses, pets, friendships, health, fitness, deaths, hardships, blessings, you name it.

There is nothing better than seeing your children happy, healthy, and succeeding. There is also nothing harder than seeing your children unhappy, hurting, and failing. However, the lessons learned through all those situations can be life-changing if they accept their responsibility to learn from them, which then returns happiness. Unfortunately, suffering seems to be the one instance when time stands still. However, it also provides an opportunity to reflect on our past while thinking ahead to our future – all while living in the present –  which is time well spent.

Time is truly something we all have in common. We all only have 24 hours in a day, no matter who you are or where you live.  We also all have a different set of time that we are here on earth.  Some people will live for 100 years, others maybe 30 years, some 10 years, etc. And within that time, some of us may be healthy our entire lives, while others may have tragedies that affect their time.

I truly believe that time is the most precious gift we can give to our children. When you give someone your time, that is a part of your life that you can never get back. Time is an investment. We must actively listen and participate in our children’s lives. Take the time to shoot baskets with your child, play games, get your nails painted (Yes Dads, I currently have my toenails painted), ride bikes, throw a football, ride waves, read books, watch movies, walk the dogs together. The dishes, laundry and grass can all wait on you (Trust me none of that stuff gets finished on its own, I’ve tried it!).

Not only am I a father, but I’ve also been blessed to be a teacher and a coach for over 20 years (Yes, I’m old…I told you time flies!). I teach and coach from the heart. I invest my time in these students and athletes to build strong relationships while teaching them to be accepting and kind. We must take time to celebrate our differences, and not waste time arguing about them.  It won’t happen overnight, but we must invest our time in today’s youth to make the world a better place.

None of my children, students and athletes will remember any gifts that I bought them, any academic objectives I taught in the classroom, or what football/basketball plays I have taught them. What they will remember is the TIME I spent with them, and invested in them, to help them become the best versions of themselves. They will remember shooting basketball, laughing, crying, eating shrimp, riding waves, and reading together. Time is precious. We never know how much time we are going to get on this earth. What we do with our time speaks volumes to who we are.

Happy early Father’s Day to all the dads out there. I hope you’re able to spend quality time with your loved ones this holiday weekend!

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