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Episode 82

On Being a Dad

Jesse Butterworth, AGCI Adoptive Dad

Welcome to Together by AGCI. I’m Marisa Butterworth. Father’s Day is just around the corner, and I thought that it would be fun to bring on a very special guest: my husband, Jesse. He’s not here to talk about what an amazing father he is, although I really do think that he is. But instead, just share about his journey, the good, the hard, and share what he’s learned over the years. I hope you laugh a little bit and share this with the dads in your life.

Well, hi Jesse, it’s me, your wife. Hi. Hi. Thank you for joining me on the podcast today. You’re welcome. You told me I had to. I did. I threatened you and I put it on the calendar, so I thought we could do this just spontaneously, but it didn’t work that way, so we had to schedule it. But this whole episode is kind of an honor of Father’s Day and I personally, without all jokes aside, I think you’re one of the best dads that I have ever seen in action, and I’ve seen you doing it for 18 and a half years now. So, I thought, who better to ask to talk about being a dad than you? Right. You read that just like I wrote it, so thank you. Great job. It didn’t even write that down. I didn’t even read that. So, I just want to start by having you tell us about our children. Let’s tell everyone.

Well, we have three kids. Liam is our oldest. He’s 18, he is about to graduate from high school and head off to Washington State University in a couple months. And I’m not okay with it. And it’s, it’s three months. I think we still have three months, because I am counting now. Oh yeah, no, it’s all good. Yeah, yeah, you’re right. Don’t scare me. And then Finn is our middle son and he’s 15. He’s about to get his driver’s license here in like a month, which is crazy. And then our youngest Harper is 10, almost 11. And we are always forever grateful to AGCI for helping us bring her home from Ethiopia 10 years, 10 and a half years ago. Yeah, that’s crazy. Yeah, so thank you for that, for running through that. I appreciate. You’re welcome, Mari. So, I would love for you to share what, what kind of fatherly example you had. I mean, this can be talking about your dad, this can be talking about other like friends’ dads, your grandpa. What did, what did that look like for you? Yeah, I mean, I think for, well, speaking for myself, I know this has been true for a lot of my friends.

I know this isn’t for everybody, but I think, you know, my dad was really my first hero and growing up and just seeing, I don’t know who he, you know, who he was when I was a kid and just, you know, back in the eighties, this was very much still like, you know, it’d seem in the morning. And then he would take his briefcase, you know, and go off to work for the day and come back at dinner and we’d all sit around the table and for some reason I remember this, this like, we would ask him what the far side comic was that day in the newspaper. And he would tell us, like, I’d tell you how, how old I am, day two of it. Yes. Yeah. So, Papa, tell us about the newspaper. That’s good. That’s legit. I mean, the far side was funny, funny, just ancient. So, you know, the thing that is always great about, about growing up, I think if you really are doing it right is you, you take all the lessons that you know, were learned from previous generations and you try to avoid it or learn from it or get better from it. And so, I think that’s something that, you know, I saw my dad do with, you know, his dad who was, he was just a quiet kind of guy who just really didn’t have much of a voice in his house.

And you know, I mean, I know he loved my dad, but he was sort of, of that generation that you, you didn’t really say it much. And you know, I was very blue collar and grew up in a really tough area and you know, and he gave my dad better than he had and my dad gave us better than he had. And so, I think we just keep trying to grow and learn from those mistakes. And so that’s, yeah, I think that’s kind of what I’ve, I’ve seen over the years as a dad through my dad, dad. I would say too, for you having been married to you for quite some time, a long time now, I would say that you actively also try to break some patterns. You know, I think it’s a simple way, the way you, a very simple and kind way that you just approached it, which is great, but I think we all have like familial patterns that we’re, that it’s important for us to try to break so that we don’t pass ’em to our kids. And I think you’re really good about actively working on yourself to try to do that. So that’s something Yeah, for sure. I mean, I think, yeah, that was, you know, kind of the point I was trying to make is exactly that. That there’s, there’s things that we can learn from.

There’s things that we can grow from and there’s things that we are not going to take forward, you know? And I think it’s really helpful to, I mean, I’m a huge fan of counseling. I’ve never been shy about saying that. I think that there’s still for some reason a stigma with men and counseling. And I think especially within the church, there’s a stigma with men counseling. And I’m just here to tell you that that’s silly and dumb and you should, you know, that it’s not, there’s an antiquated, you know, it’s not even like, it’s not even Biblical, like, I mean like how many times does it say in the Bible to that Good counsel is a good thing. So, I, I just, I I, I just found that as you go through, as I’ve been going through counseling, that it just brings you more perspective. And I think that when I first started counseling, it’s easy just to try to assign blame for a lot of the things that, you know, I’ve been dealing with or maybe I was angry about or hurt or whatever. And then I think the further on you get into your journey, the more you sort of realize you gain more perspective on sort of where you know where people are at on their journey and how you intersected with them.

And now me being middle-aged and having, you know, older kids and just recognizing it’s just not, it’s just not as simple as sometimes I think we wish or hoped it would be. Yeah. Ain’t that the truth? That’s, yeah, that’s it. So, I mean, I’m kind of curious about this, like what kind of dad did you imagine yourself being? Maybe when I was pregnant with our first. Okay. So, I definitely thought I was going to be the get down on the ground and like go outside and play and like just be the, like the dad. That was like always in those moments with the kids. And that was a hundred percent turns out. Yeah. No, that’s not the dad you were, that’s funny that that’s what you thought you would be. Yeah, totally. And I think that’s sort of like a, a bit of like a cliche of like, when you see dads, you know, on TV shows or commercials or whatever, it’s like, let’s go build Legos. And it’s not that I didn’t do those things. I definitely did those things with the kids, but I was like way more, I mean, some of the greatest joys in my life is just sitting and talking with the kids and hanging out, you know, like, so I’m really not the like, let’s go and do more things.

You know, it’s, it’s definitely like, let’s hang out and talk and I just like to, I don’t know, I just think our kids are great and like to understand more about what they enjoy and how they think and what makes him tick. Yep. I, I think when we, when I was pregnant, we just really, I don’t know, it’s like when you get married too, we just, I kind of only thought about like what it’d be like to have a baby and then I definitely didn’t imagine what it would be like to have an 18 year old, you know, like I didn’t think that far ahead and it was just like survival at that point. But yeah, you definitely didn’t end up being that dad. But lots of other good things. Lots of other good things on that right away. That, that, that’s the first I’ve heard that that’s what you thought you would be, so that’s good. So now that we’ve talked about what surprised me most, what surprised you most about parenting? Huh. Surprised me most about parenting would be how the things that would trigger me that my kids would do. Oh yeah. I didn’t think that that was, I don’t know, I thought it would be way more like large and in charge, in control.

Like just, and when you see, I mean particularly, I mean we, we always joke about this, but like my son, our son Finn is like really a lot like me and no one triggers me more than he does and as far as kids go, and it’s because some of the stuff that he does is just like what I did at, at that stage and I, I don’t know, and it just like pushes all these buttons and I’m like trying to regulate and you know, like just try to figure out what’s the best response. And just also remembering back to when I was that age, like what would’ve been a response that would’ve been actually like, helpful to me. And usually, the answer is none. Like if I decided to have done it at that age, I’m just going to do it. So yeah. So, I don’t know. Yeah, that was, that was probably one of the biggest surprises. And also, I think on a personal level, it was also surprising to me how much I, how, how much it hurt my feelings to be disrespected. You know, as far as like if they didn’t listen to me, I immediately took it personally and would be like, how dare you disrespect me? You know?

And that this became all about me and my authority in the house and you know, like just sort of the, the stereotypical, I think masculine cliche of, you know, and then just realizing like, well maybe this isn’t all about you and your, your own authority and you know that they’re not disrespecting you as a personal attack, you know? For sure. I mean, I think that’s always one of the hardest things for me, you know, like, especially reading that’s listening. The best part, if you’re not watching the best part is I know my wife’s faces and I can see she’s got her face on witches. I’m holding back so many things that I’m thinking right now and it’s not for everyone to hear what I think right now. It’s all right. No, but I think that’s, I appreciate that that’s vulnerable of you and I appreciate that you would share that because I don’t know, I, I think this podcast doesn’t try to be this, I don’t, I think we’re intentional about it, but you know, sometimes you get on and hear somebody talk about their parenting and how great they are and that they have it all figured out. And I think just in admitting that it, it kind of is a vulnerable moment where hopefully people, everybody can be okay with the things they’re not maybe okay with, I don’t know.

Well, and would you say that that’s your biggest challenge parenting, or would there be something else that you think has been, you know, a thread line through parenting? Or has it changed year by year depending on their, or stage by stage? Yeah, I, I mean, different stages for sure. I would say one of the things that I’ve, that has been one of the biggest challenges that I’ve really, you know, tried to embrace. I mean, I think this is probably about eight years ago. So when Liam was about 10 is where I think I really started thinking more about this, is that I don’t remember before that ever actually just truly apologizing to the kids. Like I felt like there was, it was like I needed, you know, we would correct them in something they were doing. And then, and they were young enough at that point that it was more just sort of like, this isn’t safe for you. Don’t do that, do this instead, you know. But I, I think up until that point, I really just thought of it more as in like that type of role and that later on, especially around 10, that’s where it, I just felt like I was getting particularly clumsy and being a dad and trying to understand how to parent, you know, a preteen and, and I just, it was all new and I just messed up a lot.

And I just found that, that even for, you know, Liam at the time, even only being 10, like I, when I could come to him and just say, you know, I didn’t, that didn’t go the way that I wanted it to. And I’m, I really, I messed that up. I think I made it worse than better. And you know, I’m, I just hope, you know, I’m always trying to do this right, but I don’t always do it right. And, you know, and I’m, I’m sorry that I made you feel that way and that what I did, you know, hurt you and would you forgive me? And you know, I, I’ve just found that with all the kids, like when I do that, there’s never, you know, they’ve never responded with, well geez dad, we always expected, you know, perfection from you. It’s just sort of like, that’s okay, you know? Yeah. I forgive you. We’ll figure it out. Well, I think that’s, it’s funny that you say that and also in how you, like what you talked about at the beginning of like, course correcting a little bit from our parents and what they did from their parents. And I think that that’s a course correction. We’ve realized as parents that we didn’t get was a, an apology from our parents. That wasn’t a thing.

I don’t know if that’s generational, if that happened to be our parents, but it, it at least wasn’t a regular thing. I don’t remember ever being apologized to by mine. And so that was something that I think was important to both of us to do, you know, with our kids and especially poor Liam, our first, like, I can’t tell you how many times in the last, like, especially these last couple years that I’ve said like, heads up, we have no idea what we’re doing. Like we, we don’t know, this is uncharted territory for us to parent you. And yeah, it’s, it’s, so it does come with lots of apologies, I think, which I, I, my next question is what do you think you do pretty well? I would vote that you do that really well. What else do you think you do pretty well? I mean, I do think that I’m pretty fun. Like wasn’t a very confident one. Mark. Yeah. I mean I like, I don’t know, I try to do fun stuff with the kids, and you know, if it’s just something as little as like, yeah, we’ll just go sneak through Wendy’s and get a frosty real quick. Or if it’s like, Hey, I’m going to take you to a baseball game, or, you know, getting to do kind of bigger more fun stuff.

Like, you know, taking fend of the World Series a couple years ago and, you know, I, I think that that’s something, I don’t know, I just think back on when I was younger, like those are a lot of the memories I took with me. Some of those, you know, some of the smaller pieces of just like the, the really everyday type of stuff where my folks were just present in some moment, you know? But also, the more sort of momentous, you know, occasions of going to Washington DC and, you know, seeing Monticello and cello. Monticello. Monticello. What? I’m going to go with cello like the instrument, Monticello or Northeast. Yeah, that sounds right. Tell us if that’s right. Someone will correct us if we’re wrong or if anyone listens. I don’t know. Maybe no one listen, no one don’t care. We’re just having a conversation just announcing states and cities and, and landmarks. Let’s see.

Yeah, and I mean, I think the other thing too is I just trying to be vulnerable with the kids and just say things like, I mean, we were just talking about that this was it yesterday, we were talking about it, but just like the phrase of saying that really hurt my feelings, which is such a hard phrase for I think a lot of men, including myself to say, because it feels so, it feels weak I think to say, but really, I don’t know why we feel like that’s weak because I can’t think of something more, you know, strong than to be able to say how you feel. And, and so I think to, to be able to, to recognize when something hurts your feelings and to be able to go back to your kids and say, Hey, when you did that, that really hurt my feelings because, you know, and hearing that and hopefully they see us as like just, you know, humans that have emotions and feelings and that we’re not just these, you know, armored up parent cops that, you know, come in and bring the authority and the rules and lay down the law and then walk away. I mean, that’s basically my role. So, you are robo mom. Yeah. Right. Okay. What’s your funniest, this can go all the way back. Funniest dad. I know that’s not a word. Dad story. Dad story. What’s the funniest thing you’ve ever done?

Oh gosh, there’s so many. But the first one that popped into my head right when you said that is when Finn was little. I mean, what was he like five maybe at this point? I don’t know. Was it, is it the story? I think at soccer? Yeah. No, he was like 3 0 3. Okay. Really? Okay. Yeah. So, at that age he decided that the world was his bathroom. That there was no reason to go into an actual restroom. You could just do it anywhere and everywhere. And so, he just started doing that. It was right after potty training. Yeah, it was like diapers off. But yeah, he just not going to stop me from, yeah. So, he like peed in the, in the kitchen. Garbage. Garbage. Yeah. There’s one poop in the backyard. And like one time my brother was over, and he stepped in it and he came in, he was like, oh man, I stepped in dog. Wait a minute, you guys don’t have a dog. You don’t have a dog. No. That was really embarrassing. He wasn’t ashamed of it. He wasn’t even like, there is no side of, he is like, yeah, what I picked in the backyard, go, whatcha you gonna do? Which you can’t be mad at that. I mean, it’s just like, I mean, I could, I was so, so we were at Liam’s, well actually, you know, you always remember the details better than I do. Was it his game?

No, they both had soccer games that morning. So, Finn had already played. Okay. And then Liam was on the field? Yes, Liam was on the field. Finn was standing on the sidelines with us and on the sidelines full of parents. He just drops tr right there and just like, and I’m like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. So, I pick him up from behind and I just start running. There was like a porta potty, a ways away from hundred yards aways. And then he just starts, well no from behind. I was chasing behind you. And it was just like poop dropping from his little guns onto into the grass as we kept running. And by the time you waited to the bathroom, he was done? No, he was done. He was done. And I just remember I had to waddle because I was trying to run but keep my legs far apart, so I didn’t step on his poop. So, everyone’s tuning in now. Yes, we did just talk about poop, but there drastically. Yes. Well, that’s, that’s a good one. I, I wasn’t thinking of that one, so that’s good. So, I mean, who’s the tougher parent? You or me? I’m going back to that, like who’s the robo parent? Tougher, tougher. I think we’re both pretty good about switching off that there’s never one that’s always the, you know, the tough one, the enforcer. Yeah.

I think we do a pretty good job of, you know, even I That’s good. I was going to say I think we both have our weaknesses and that there’s stuff that we think is funny that the other one doesn’t think is funny. So, the one will be laughing while the other one’s trying to like parent it. Yeah, true. And so, we maybe switch off on that. I don’t know, that’s true. But we do switch off if we, I wouldn’t say one of us is, has to be the like, bad guy all the time or, well, and I think too we, we kind of have awareness of it because I remember like, especially through sort of the early teen years that there would be times that we would kind of call out to each other like, Hey, here’s something that’s fun, you know, I’m, why don’t you tell him and take him? You know? Cause you need a win here. You need a win is a big one for both of us. So, here’s a good one. Now that we’ve lived through raising babies and toddlers, what advice would you have given yourself as a young dad? Yeah, I think the advice I would give myself as a young dad is just keep hugging and kissing your kids even when they’re older.

You know, I just remember like trying to respect like, and it was never asked and it was never even something that they communicated, but I just thought, well, when the boys got older they wouldn’t, you know, and there was a natural time that I wouldn’t, you know, kiss them goodbye going to school, they kind of pulled away and it was like, oh, I get it. You know? But I kind of stopped doing that. And then, you know, you had really encouraged me to keep, keep being, you know, showing them physical affection. And so, so I still do, even with my 18-year-old who’s, you know, taller than me and twice as strong as I am. And just, you know, it’s funny that I’ll go up and I just give him a big hug and just to feel the full weight of them kind of rest into me, you know, it’s like, it’s really sweet. It is. It’s the best ever. It’s a fun thing of having older kids still hug you. So obviously you said at the beginning, our daughter is Ethiopian, we adopted her back in 2012 as a baby. And I know for me, I learned a ton about myself, about parenting, about God’s love. So many things when we brought her home. What would you say you learned? What’s the best thing that you learned from adoption?

I mean, there’s too many to count, but I would say one of the top things is just how powerful love is that I, I remember having this feeling when we were pregnant with Finn, which was will I love, I was afraid that I wouldn’t love Finn as much as I loved Liam because I didn’t know, you know, that’s all I knew was just having Liam and just, and then people kept saying like, oh, your heart will grow. You know? And I felt like that absolutely happened. And then when we brought Harper home, I, again, I think I had some fear of like, will I love her? You know, can I love her as much as the boys? And not thinking because she was adopted, just as in bringing another kid in and then just that feeling of like, oh my gosh, just who knew that the, there were so many rooms in my heart, you know? And that these doors just kept getting thrown open more and more and more and more and how big these rooms were and to see the, you know, all of the kids together. And I’ve never one time ever thought of Harper as anything but our daughter. And just that depth of love that I have for her is, is incredible. So, I think just the learning about how deep, you know, the heart can love. Well, and I’ll mention that, I know this doesn’t happen for everyone.

Everyone’s story is different that adopts. But when we met her, I think, I mean, I know she attached to you before she attached to me, and I got to witness you. Like I, I mean from the moment you first saw her makes me all choked up. Both of us. It’s the same as when you hold your baby for the first time that you’ve just given birth to. When we held her for the first time, it was like, oh, there you are. I’ve been wondering who you were, what you look like, what all these things, what your personality is. And it’s just like, there you are, and your heart just explodes right then and there. Yeah. Yeah. So, as I’m getting all choked up, I wish this wasn’t the next question because we cry about this a lot. We, our son is graduating this year, our first born, gosh dang it. So, what has been the best part of getting him to this stage though? Like, we won’t go into the heavy stuff of why we’re total disasters of, you know, but what’s been the best part of getting him here?

Not that we’re done parenting, but Yeah, that’s what I was just going to say was I think the best part of getting him here is the realization that we’re not done is that, you know, we’ve, I think we’ve done as much as we can to the best of our ability, which has been better some days than others, you know, of getting him to be just a good person and to be able to take skills with him elsewhere. And whether it’s down to seeing him be really kind to other people or really patient, you know, with the kids who just, you know, when he gets here and all the kids are in the cul-de-sac and they just, you know, pomme him and he’s just so sweet with them and, or even down to hearing him, you know, blast Frank Sinatra music in the other room, you know, that like, you know, Frank, I love Frank Sinatra. So, hearing him, you know, share that love, like just, I don’t know, those, those little moments I just see like, oh, you know, man, you know, he’s a, he’s a good kid. And also recognizing like, this isn’t just it, it isn’t like, okay, well we’ve done our part now. Good luck. Yeah.

You know that it’s like, okay, now we enter into a new stage of parenting where, you know, hopefully he’ll come and ask us advice or hopefully he’ll come and share what’s going on in his life even though we’re not physically there for, you know, a lot of what’s going on since he’s going off to school in another place. Yeah. It’s interesting too because we both like, our stories were both more like, once we went, like we both really wanted to go to college, it was like, okay, let’s get out of here. We’re going to go to college. This is it. We’re making that transition. And like, it’s interesting, I think for me, I’ve struggled with him leaving because I’m like, this is it. He is just leaving. And then also realizing like, oh, he doesn’t have that same experience that we had where it’s like we had some trauma stuff going on with family and we both just wanted out. And he’s not there. Like, he wants to go to college, but he’s not escaping from something he’s, he’s not saying, I don’t want to go home again. Which I think for us it’s like that realization of that it’s not over yet that we do that looks different, but we have some, some more time hopefully. Yeah. You know, where he, he’ll come home and let us have a little bit of that. Just a taste of it. Yep. Like what it, what it was.

So how, how has all that you’ve learned about God’s love over the years personally informed how your parenting style or methods have like grown and shifted over the years? I would say one of the primary things is that I have felt for my whole life that I am, I am unworthy and I’m just lucky that God loves me and would call me his child. And I think that a lot of that messaging was really drilled into us at church. And I think that there is a truth there for sure. That that a, a holy God sovereign over everything would choose to love us and know us so deeply and personally. That is incredibly, you know, like what that is. Wow. We are lucky. Like in the same way, you know, that I would say I’m so lucky that you love me. You know, like you, you could have had anybody that you wanted to, you know, and yet you chose me. Like I, I think, wow, I’m so, I’m so lucky and like, I don’t, some days I just don’t feel worthy that, you know, but man, I’m so grateful.

So, I think there is a piece of that there, I think where it, where it tends for me to get into the negative and I’ve had so many conversations with other people that have felt like this is that you’re just constantly in this loop of like, you’re just, hey, you’re just lucky that God loves you. You’re so unworthy. Like you are such a sinner. Aren’t you so lucky that God would even let you in the door? And I think, you know, if we look at a, particularly if we look at Jesus’ teachings, and I just think of like the, the parable of the prodigal son. Like, I get all choked up when I talk about this, when the prodigal son returns that the father doesn’t go out and say, or first of all may, you know, he, he, he, he goes out, he doesn’t just stay in, he doesn’t keep the doors closed. And he does, you know, and then when he does go out, he doesn’t go out and say, you should have listened to me, you, I you have totally blown this. You know, like, wow, what, you know, you owe me an apology right here and right now. And just the idea that he celebrates him home. Yeah.

And I think that especially being a dad and having kids, I just remember from the very first second I saw every single one of my kids, the last, like, the thought that never has once crossed my mind with any of my kids is you are lucky to have my love. Yeah. Right. Like, I just, with all of my kids, I just think I love you so much and I would do anything for you, and I want you to know, you know, I want you to be good people and I want you to receive love well, and I want you to give love. Well, and I want you to make this world a better place by being the most human. It’s the opposite. It’s the, like, we feel so lucky to be their parents. Like we got that a lot right when we got brought Harper home, like, oh, she’s so lucky. She’s so lucky to have you. I’m like, oh, luck is not involved in this. Like, she just went through Helen back and didn’t get to pick us. Like, like we are lucky to have her. We are lucky that we’re so fortunate, you know, to have our kids and, and love our kids, you know? I don’t know. Yeah. It just, yeah. Yeah. I agree. I do think that that has been such a huge learning for me that I’m still learning.

I still feel like there’s, you know, shame is a shame is a powerful motivator. And unfortunately, it’s, it’s prevalent in our churches because it’s a great way to keep people in line. You know, it’s just to shame them into, into this or that or whatever. But it’s like that’s, it’s a short-term motivator because at some point you’re just going to end up being sick of feeling awful. And what’s an even more powerful long-term motivator is, is love. That’s what wins every time. And even in the times where love means that you watch your child walk away and make a bad choice, you know, like that love means celebrating them home love means, you know, being there in the midst of it, of the heart. Yeah, yeah. And not walking away and just opening, throwing open your, your arms, you know, and just, yeah. Like I think that we, I think that as parents we miss a lot that because you celebrate your child home or you’re so happy that they’re there, whatever is to say, I accept everything that you’ve done. Like it’s, you know, hey, whatever, like you do, you like that, you know, I think that’s where we’ve missed it.

And so, we think, well then that’s where we need to give them a cold shoulder or really help them recognize that, you know, I’m sending you away as punishment, or I’m not go, I’m going to be withholding from what my love from you so that you learn your lesson. And it’s just, that’s, that’s truly anti-Christ, right? I mean, to like that is not the way that, that Jesus did it. And, and so, and that, and it’s not easy because it’s the easy way truly is to say, now I’m going to withhold myself. I’m going to uphold my love and withhold my affection. I’m going to withhold, you know, because I need you to learn a lesson. And gosh, the way that God teaches us lessons is just not that way. I don’t know, if you were to ask me what my learning was, i i of parenting, that would be the biggest thing is everything you just shared. I don’t need to reiterate it, but I wholeheartedly agree. I think that’s, that’s the big learning after parenting, that God doesn’t see you like that.

I think the more, I mean that’s where I think so much of the hard work is in, you know, kind of circling back to what we were talking about earlier, like even in counseling or just doing self-reflection and self-examination is just recognizing how much, how much of that programming is in us, how much of that programming is that we see God as just this, like as withholding and as you know, as someone who, who seems to take joy in disciplining us in, you know, in a really tough way, you know, as opposed to that he, you know, a God that always calls us out as opposed to a God that’s always calling us in. So, last question. The most serious of all, if you could parent with any one person in the world, who would it be? I probably go with like Jane Russell circa, you know, 1965. She was probably crazy. That was a trick question. And you failed. Dang it. The answer was supposed to just be you, honey. You’re the person. I would choose me, apparently. I would choose me. I would choose me. I do choose me. It’s you every time it’s you, you know, I give you a hard time. Cut all of it. I’m taking, I’m not doing this podcast. I’m finding another dad. I told you; I warned you upfront. And I was like, you’re, you picked the wrong guy, honey.

I would, I would parent with you every step of the way. Every, every, we don’t have a choice. What’s that? I said, yeah, yeah. Because you don’t have a choice. So, yeah. Right. That’s good. I loved how much we have grown together throughout this. Thank you. Now I’m going to wrap it up though. Well honey, thank you for joining me on the podcast. I swear I learn something new every time we talk, and I appreciate, I don’t know that you’d get on here and be open and honest and vulnerable and share, you know, all the good stuff and all the hard stuff too that you’ve learned. And you’re an amazing dad. You’re not just an okay dad, you’re an amazing dad. And someday I really hope our kids agree. Thank you for being on today and happy Father’s Day. Almost my pleasure. Thank you.

That was my husband, Jesse Butterworth. I hope you enjoyed listening. If you like what you heard, please share it with all your people. Make sure to follow us and rate us wherever you listen to podcasts. Keep up with us on social media by following us on Instagram and Facebook @AllGodsChildrenInternational. Thank you for watching or listening to Together by AGCI.