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Dads: Give kids life lessons on your day

East Bernard Express of East Bernard, Texas

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As parents, our goal is to raise our children to be self-sufficient, independent adults. Most days I'd like to think we are headed in the right direction.

And then I get the phone call, or the email or the text message. The mode of communication is irrelevant. The bottom line is the same. Something has happened and they need mom or dad to help them figure out what to do next.

Several weeks ago our oldest daughter called her father. He happened to be home for lunch at the time and we decided to throw her off track, and I answered his phone.

'Wait, I thought I called dad," she said.

"No, it's mom," I teased.

"Well I just had a wreck," she said. Oops, here's dad and I threw the phone at him. Bad timing for a joke maybe? She was in tears, the first car she was paying for after all, but as soon as he made sure everyone was OK, he assured her it was going to be all right and not to panic. He's better at stuff like that than me.

Everyone was fine, just a fender bender but another life lesson that had to be taught dealing with insurance, rental cars and body shops. The fun never ends. And this time, thankfully, it wasn't even her fault.

A few weeks later, my husband and I were on a date night. His phone rings. Same daughter, different day. The gauge in her car said the tire pressure on her right front tire was low. "What do I do?" she asked.

"You put air in the tire, dear," he said.

Sitting in the car beside him, I could guess the next question: How do I do that?

He walked her through that process and then she called back in and a panic and said she had too much air in the tire. Trying not to laugh at her expense, he handed the phone to me. We can always count on her for comic relief, whether she knows it or not.

So I'm sitting in the car beside him thinking, "Where did we go wrong?" Or maybe where did dear old dad go wrong?

My dad never left me to my own devices when I had a minor traffic accident or a low tire. But then again, I lived in the same town and he owned an automotive repair shop. He knew what to do in any situation regarding all things car related.

I'm thinking somewhere along the way my husband has failed our daughters. Shouldn't they know how to put air in their tires and check the oil in their cars? I remember putting gas in the car for our new drivers was a challenge. Maybe that should have been our sign.

Just because she doesn't live with us, doesn't mean we are off the hook. I just think it's interesting that she calls dad in these instances. Guess she thinks mom doesn't know how to air up a tire or what to do when you have traffic incident. Which is probably OK

So dads, this Father's Day, do something productive. Teach your children a life lesson about something important. And enjoy your day. If you're like my father, or my children's father, you deserve it!

Tricia Potts, a mother of four, is a homemaker and newspaper columnist living in East Bernard.

Copyright 2016 East Bernard Express, East Bernard, Texas. All Rights Reserved. This content, including derivations, may not be stored or distributed in any manner, disseminated, published, broadcast, rewritten or reproduced without express, written consent from SmallTownPapers, Inc.

Original Publication Date: July 16, 2016

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