My first daughter was born in 2014. I was in OSUT which is the Army Infantry Basic Training.
It was a Sunday afternoon when I found out I was going to be a dad. My battle buddy walked in the bay after going to church and handed me a note that some random dude gave him and the guy said “Hey man, do you know Spencer, I grew up with him.” Sure enough, Josh knew who I was because we were in the same Platoon together. He bring the note back with a huge smile on his face and says “Bro, you’re not going to believe this shit.”
I had no idea that note was going to change my entire life.
I was still an immature kid when I left for the army. I just wanted to go shoot bad guys in the face and most likely die in war. I was content and perfectly fine with that. I think a lot of people that go in that job have made that decision. After reading that note, I didn’t believe it to be honest with you but then I started to think back and connect the dots and sure as shit, that little girl was definitely mine. Especially when she came into this world and I saw a picture of her, I was on my way to Airborne school, I knew that my life had just changed and my thought of “I am going to go to war and die” changed completely.
I had my dad growing up, without him I wouldn’t be where I am today. He led by example and I still to this day feel like I have big shoes to fill. I enjoy that though because my son will have even bigger shoes to fill.
I finally got to hold my baby girl in the Omaha Airport when I finished up Airborne School. My Mom was the one that got to hand her off to me, I for sure wouldn’t be here without my mom either.
It was the day I realized, I couldn’t die. I had to accomplish my goal though which was make it to the highest level in the military. But, instead of not making it out, I had to make it out for her so that she could have a Dad to look up too and have in her life.
8 years have gone by and I am still not where I want to be, which is with her. I have to watch from a phone screen still because of some unfortunate circumstances that I will talk about at a later date.
It started with her, my beautfiful Sky. She has no idea how many people know about her around the world and when she is old enough, she will probably read this and have a lot of questions.
In 2017, my son was born. Now, I really have to make it out of this shit but that still wasn’t going to be my way out. I was going to go until I couldn’t anymore, which is exactly what happened. My dad always told me, “you’ll know when it is your time to be done” he is always fucking right when it comes to knowing me and my life. Thats why he will always be my best friend, which is what I want to be for my kids.
My son was a different story, he was there with me through it all. He grew up in the military housing and life, not knowing when his dad was going to come back or when I would be leaving again. I think that is what made him so independent and mature. The minute I walked in my house though, nothing else mattered in my life except for him because he was right in front of my eyes and I could finally be what I wanted to be, a father. Not through a cell phone either. A physically there, in the presence, father. I got to show him discipline, new skills, new words, colors and shapes. It truly made my hungrier to reach the highest level even faster because I want my kids to think I am the most badass dude on this planet. I could care less what anyone else thinks of me because they will be the ones wiping my ass when I am getting ready to go.
Then my little princess was born in 2019. She is a straight mixture of both Sky and Char. I missed the majority of her life until I got hurt. Once I was home for surgeries and recovery, her and I became like two peas in a pod. Since I missed being able to be a girl dad for Sky, I was able to do all the things I wanted to do with her. Singing to her when she has no idea what words are, carrying her around like a kangaroo and tickling her til she sang with that beautiful laugh.
My three best friends are the reason why I continue to work on myself and my career every day.
I will show them what building an idea into reality looks like and I will be confident when I tell them “You can do and be whatever the hell you want in this world” because they will look at my life and see exactly that.
Trust me, I thought I was going to be in the Army for 20 years, but those weren’t the cards for me and that’s okay so it is my duty to show them the true meaning of “When one door closes, another one is waiting for you to open.”
That is exactly whatI am doing every single day, leading by example so my kids have the right path to walk in.