what matters when you’re two

While doing some online research I came across this little tidbit of parental guilt, tacked on to the front of a doctoral thesis: “This thesis is dedicated to my beautiful daughter, Emily Shen, who needed me when I was not there.”

Yesterday, I think our two-year-old could identify with Emily. He woke up from his nap asking, “Daddy coming?”

“No,” I said, “Daddy has class tonight. Daddy’s not coming yet.” He wouldn’t be home until well after the boys’ bedtime.

After dinner our little one started talking about Daddy again, peering through the sliding glass door into the darkness, hoping for a glimpse of him. Then he ran about the house whimpering and checking the door every lap.

With the hope that his dad was in the office on the lower level, he stood at the top of the stairs and called down, “Daad-dy where aaare yooouuuu…?”

I tried explaining again that Daddy had to go to school this evening, but I had a feeling no explanation would suffice.

Today’s Friday, and Caleb will be pleased that his daddy will be home on time. After all, when you’re two you don’t really care if your father has an advanced degree. What matters is that he has time to play.

Related post: three-year-old logic

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3 thoughts on “what matters when you’re two

  1. You’ve described beautifully such a difficult situation. I have just finished my first semester as a grad. student and while I’m thankful to have a chance to be in school (and write!) I also know it has come at a cost. I don’t think there is a right answer.

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