I’ll never forget the experience I had getting ready for my freshman year of NCAA Football. I had the opportunity to spend three months training with my cousin, Tom Boskey, one of the toughest linebackers in Iowa State history.
When I arrived in Sioux Falls, SD to train with Tom and his wife Shellie, I was roughly 210 lbs. By the end of the summer in 1988, I was around 240 lbs. running a 4.65 second 40-yrd. dash. My daily schedule was: intense weight training, running sprints and 12-minute runs, eating a high-protein diet, and sleeping at least 10 hours a day. To this day, my mom thinks I took steroids. Thanks, mom.
Now, as a father of two young men, looking back, two lessons can be gleaned from this experience.
1). My parents were not equipped to prepare me for the path in which I was headed. Sometimes you need to find resources outside of yourself to help prepare your child. This is not an excuse to neglect your duties as a father, but there may be opportunities to call on a cousin or uncle or a trusted neighbor who can help in areas in which you are deficient. Tom and Shellie poured themselves into me for nearly 3 months. For that I’m very thankful.
2). You can help train the child for the path even if it’s not your child. Biology isn’t everything. Who do you know who doesn’t have an engaged father? Can you be a father or a mentor to them? Or, do you know a father who might be struggling and could use some help engaging their children?
Even with the proper training, the child might veer from the path.
Stay tuned to the disaster that ensued after training with a pro.
P.S. I didn’t take steroids.
John (a student of fatherhood)