From Tony Woodlief's heartfelt meditation on fatherhood:
Lately I have wrestled with bouts of panic. I fear I am too far behind, already, in this father’s race. I am apart from them more than I want. This is how our lives will be for the next several years. They used to ask when my traveling will be done, and now they don’t. They have been fishing more with other fathers than with me. They have been to Boy Scouts with other fathers, but not with me. This is our life into any future I can foresee, not that I have ever seen the future well.
Sometimes I panic, and then I despair. Your life stretching out before you holds a series of choices, and what you don’t realize until you are older is how quickly those choices can accumulate and choke off possible futures. If you are not care-filled and prayer-filled and intentional, your days may pile up with more regret than hope.