The Second Stage of Learning

Photo 2017-11-21, 7 41 43 PM“We are all fingers on a hand and together we are strong”

I became a single father 10 years ago and it felt like my life had stopped.

It was only a part of my life that had stopped, the proverbial rat race that I was addicted to. Running a business fulfilled my gifts and felt like purpose.

When life “paused” something great happened.

Yes I went through the withdraws like every single parent goes through. You want to play like an adult and it seems like everyone else around you is having fun. The lesson you teach go painstakingly slow and your at your child’s screaming command.

I went from talking with customers and running crews to parent teacher meetings and running a new type of crew. I had four children at that point in life.

It was this moment that also gave so much.

Like my first day of high school bumbling around , as so was I in this first part of parenting.

The second lesson in life!

A moment of relearning all the lessons of childhood over again through the eyes of your children.

A graduation from selfishness and ego entwined in a society view of finding ones self, too it not being about you.

This education molded me, honed my gifts in ways I never knew I could achieve.

Hammered on my brain with such a unique tapping of sweet voices of asking the same questions over and over;

Can I have a treat?

Dad what are you doing?

I’ve got to go pee.

Gifts aside what parents go through in raising children creates what I like to call the “Jedi Brain”.

It’s worth every moment.

Through this lesson Norm Average was born and the phrase “We are all fingers on a hand and together we are strong”

My kids being my fingers and me being the thumb.

At this time Norm Average was only born and the way I was saying the phrase was still selfish. Only including my family and not the world around us.

As in the beginning of everyone’s Second Stage of learning!

Over the years and lessons this became more and reached a larger circle mixing in neighbours, parents and my children’s friends. Looking at the world with New eyes realizing where my gifts belonged.

I had always used my gifts for monetary reasons.

The Rat race ideology!

Parenting had given me a love for people and an understanding of how beautiful and unique we all are.

How fallacious and helpless we can all be at any given moment in life.

We are all someone’s child!

I took a platform that I had built for my children and started teaching the world.

The gifts that had been honed for years in my “Jedi” training had become more than just mine. My world was more than just my family and I knew that it was mine as well as your responsibility to help create a better world for our children.

“Anyone can be a Superhero it starts at Home”

My platform was built for kids as a Father wanting to leave a gift for his children. A recipe that can be applied to every aspect of life without conflicting with anyone’s person, cultural or religious beliefs. Taking all the ego and gender out of the equation because Superheroes exists in all country’s and with all genders. The Heroes Journey and we all live our own type of existence in that realm.

Years have passed and I know help parents all over the world.

I’ve watched families grow and helped coach many others in getting their dreams going.

My kids are reaching their mid teens and also teach and follow the platform. Achieving their dreams one step at a time.

Helping others is amazing!

Learning how to use your gifts to help others is life changing.


Why Moms are so important.

mom-banner-700Although it should be obvious and the image of a mother should be put on a pedestal, it hasn’t always been that for me. We are in fact products of our environments and this being said we hold on to our beliefs with blind faith. To take away beliefs is to admit wrong or worse as it unveils your choices on the path of your life.

I was taught to objectify women in a world where they worked for my dad. My brothers and I seen the image of a woman as a beautiful picture dancing on a stage. Choreographed just for us with an angelic silhouette only to be pillaged at the end of the song.

Surprisingly we were not alone in these thoughts.

This image of how a man should act towards women was not shunned but in fact praised. Through my teen years this idea was vindicated by mass amounts of friends that followed in a conquest of conquering virgins and the more I achieved the more I heard “your just like your father”. To a son these words are like the gold medal in the Olympics, an achievement of such grandeur that blind faith begins with.

To add to the encouragement where cartoons and kid shows that in them selves taught that these actions where normal. My father would come home and bellow the word “woman” just like Fred Flintstone and in that caveman way of thinking, she better have had her womanly duties ready. Even the Beaver’s mom was portrayed as a frantic woman that only had one side to her and although I never experienced that type of motherhood, I was taught that image.

The Damsel in distress.

Throughout my life and even more into my adult years these same thoughts where once again justified by the chatter of mom’s. These women would talk in front of us and tell stories of how it’s all their dads fault. Recanting on the violence and torture they where put through and how they only escaped with their children.  I can’t say for sure but as a kid it felt like I was the only one with a dad instead of a mom. I’d watch my friends torn by thoughts of their relations to monsters and the paradox of their mothers attraction to my father.

This followed into my relationship with my children’s mother and over the ten years and four kids I somehow became her monster. Only to be judged by a group of her peers and branded as the many men before me. A justified reason to leave letters on our pillows saying goodbye, with one final message ” I hope you understand how I feel”.

A Generation of dads.

It is amazing how the world changes through out your life. The crossing of generations and the seeding of idea’s. My children know more families now being raised by dads than I ever did as a child. In ways I see positives in this as more father figures are being cast in stone and at the same time the family unit itself has changed so drastically from my childhood that there is no normal anymore. The same stories I heard as a kid have morphed into men telling the same reasoning I heard the last generation of women tell tale of.

As a single dad dating, your first date always brings up “What went wrong”, it’s daunting. A continuous reflection of childhood stories mixed with a new adult implications. The constant approval that your not that monster not only to the women I’ve dated but also to myself.

My minds manifestation.

At this point your reading and wondering where this is going. I cast no blame on my life or my choices but the longer I’ve been a dad, the more I’ve realized I wasn’t taught to be one. The lack of these teachings has also stunted my ability to be a partner. This isn’t only my problem but a world wide problem and the raising of a daughter and future mother has changed my perspective on woman.

I can’t say I will ever understand the stay at home mom but I have a deep respect for the last generation of single moms. Being a single parent is hard, you are alone responsible for the outcome of a future, which society itself complicates. Sometimes you feel helpless to the tears of your child, grasping for answers that you yourself don’t completely understand. Your a protector and yet as strong as you can become thoughts and ideas are planted by the person that insists your a monster.

Why moms are important.

As a man this thought would have never occurred but as a dad I ask for your help.

I wasn’t taught to be a dad or husband, as most men in society today. We hear advertisements like “back to school prices for mom” that reassure the out of date place as taught in the family unit. Relationships and the art of communication have been lost in a generational quest to create equality. Baby boomers where taught different than I was and the next taught even more diverse ideas. Yet as adults we all sit in the same room casting judgement and arguing on the faults. With each grouping of man holding onto the previous beliefs and now women planning on the single parent life before it even begins, or worse holding on to the monster card which is socially acceptable.

We need to reinvent the concept of man and in this need your help.

Women have completely changed every aspect of their positioning in life but the scales have not been tipped. There are still issues of equality in government and in any status of power like religion or politics. Yet our future is still in your hands as there are more single moms and stay at home moms than dads. It’s never too late to learn but childhood sets the patterns for the rest of our lives. This power is long term and may seem trivial but holds more sway than the egotistical cavemen that try to hold on to the old ways.

With your help and understanding that the quest for equality has never included teaching boys to be fathers, moms become the answer to future heart breaks.

I understand that most men will not comprehend this as it’s taken me forty years to grasp and my campaign “Think like a dad,not like a man” has received more mother support than fathers.

We still have groups of men that desecrate the sanctity of motherhood not only in person but with online groups holding onto the archaic man. Our boys will grow up and have to face these true monsters as men and our daughters as wives and mothers. This can not continue in a cycle of overlapping generations.

The word mother.

I have never experienced what I am asking but I have seen it.

I know this is possible as moms are goddesses among men. You create life in a way that gives so much of you. As a man I will never truly understand this but as a single dad I can encompass the force you wield.

A mom is more than a woman, and holds the power of this worlds future!

Do you believe in fairy tales?

I mean the true concept of the creation of the story and the story teller. The story teller themselves need experience in order to tell the story or is the imagination so grande it can spin a tale that one might feel it was for them?

Can ones experiences written just right,  insight change in the very darkness the idea was drawn from?

I guess this would depend on the reader.

An endless gaze of eyes of all shapes and colors. Hosted by culture, experience and geography. Each one intricately different and yet still so much the same. Some looking to the hero for answers and others to the villain with empathy for their cause. Some of our heroes are even the bad guys as we change cultures and the elite elevated to gods.

As a child the stories my dad told were not your average fairy tales. He had a silver tongue that would turn bar fights and flantering, into battles and distressed damsels. An eviction notice into survival camping and scams into plans. My dad was my fairy tale, he was unique and sweetened any situation with words. Most of all he kept the bad away regardless of how close the devil was. Our journeys took us to so many places that schools out numbered fingers on my hand and the word “step mom” had more faces than i can remember.

This was my life and the only thing I ever knew. Painted by an artist who’s brush stroke gave courage and pride.Took our hardships and pain and made them drinking songs and bragging rights. He was and still is the hero of my story no matter how complicated of a man he could be the dad he was protected me from his demons.

The dark isn’t safe.

It was when he was gone that danger would close in. When people would transform into the very creatures that terrify us in the dark. You see the stories that I was told are the same stories that took him away. When Robin Hood became the thief and the Sheriff was just in his conquest. For thieves the law isn’t the only fear, it’s your comrades and most trusted.

My earliest memory of the darkness was just a taste. My father had gone to prison, what would be a cycle to come. His wife whom I’d like to call my mom was left with my brother and I. She was the safest I felt away from my dad in all my life. As a child I wouldn’t know this but writing with experience, she is the model of the word mom and not all would treat me like she did.

As the father I am now I look back with admiration for some, being left alone with kids and all the debts and responsibilities. Life in the shadows creates debts to scary figures, with rules of collection that are not kid friendly. I remember the pounding at the door as she yelled to the men on the other side. Watching her move frantically and making phone calls as the men kept trying to get in.  Words blur and in all the commotion I’m in the basement clenched by my mom until the noises subsided.

Later in life I would learn she called a bigger darkness that came first in line on debts, the reason why the noises stopped.

Better days.

I’m not clear on the circumstances but I do know two things happened before I was back with my dad. She took us far from the dangers and my time spent with her are some of my best childhood memories. She also gave me a gift in life, a brother.

There where many in between places before our next stop.

Regardless of the shadows my dad made it fun.

He came from a generation where single dads did not get assistance. Although his choices as a man might be considered faulty, his moments as a dad where remarkable. His life choices are also the link to the women in this blog I called mom.

We went from townhouse block to apartments and from towns to towns. Like bandits we’d even hide out at family. Bedtime stories in grandpa’s basement or fire tales at our cousins. From city life to farm but the three of us where unstoppable.

On the farm was more about bonding brothers, we went everywhere together. Snow forts to egg fights, even showering in the rain.We’d helped our dad strip cars down. At eight years old I could drive a car well enough to drive my dad home on a bender. Some days after school when no one was home my brother and I would take the cars for a spin. It’s amazing what two brothers could do with the ability of not needing a key.

The stop.

The freedom in which my brother and I lived was due to the man not the dad. Through those journeys he brought home a stripper. Wild and crazy with hardcore crashes. She let us break all the rules and was left with us most the time. Her life was a party and that didn’t matter whether we where around or not. The first song i remember was a David Wilcox song. “Life for me is a river boat fantasy,  watching the sun go down. Cocaine kisses and moonshine misses , that’s the life for me”.

She would throw bottles and run through the house naked chasing our dad with knives. She didn’t scare me, it was more a fear for my dad than of my safety.

When I say she let us break all the rules, that’s because so did she. Late nights while my dad was boosting cars she would tell his secrets. She told us of our older brother and that my mother was someone different. She took away the fantasies of his stories.

She also called all our moms when my father went back to prison. This defining moment has caused me more pain in life than I have the words to write. As an adult I understand but as a child i didn’t just loose my dad, I lost my brothers.

My dad had his demons, but my mom showed me hers.

I met my mom at the age of nine turning ten.  It took me the better part of a year before I’d even entertain the thought of uttering the word mom. She was small and quiet like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, with beer bottles instead of beakers.

There is no right way for me to write about her. No gift my dad may have bestowed on me to sweeten the experience with fantasy. She brought fear for the first time in my life. The fear for my life and more so the fear for hers. This small woman had a tenancy of hearing things wrong and attacking the biggest guy at the bar. She was like a caged animal at five foot four and if she believed it watch out!

Our second home was the bar which had a grill to allow that family friendly atmosphere. Lifers sitting at the counter and patio for sunny days. We’d switch between them according to whether or not we’d been kicked out or not.

This was my life: from working on the cars my dad stole to bouncing for an alcoholic.

Not all was bad with her as Dr. Jekyll would show remorse and guilt. The words “sorry it wont happen again”. Sometimes it would last and we would play mother and son. At these times I would learn the best of her. She would smile and try to act like she was ready to have a son. I say this as an adult as living with a child and without are very different things and that is a lot to get used to. She introduced me to family and through those family members a life time of memories.

The sins of the father.

After time I studied her, started to understand the triggers. How much alcohol and pills before the bear would came out. If I should come home at night or stay at a friends. If she got too drunk it got bad, but if she saw me as my dad it got worse. Mrs. Hyde would come out swinging and I’d be paying for her memories of my dad. I am my father’s son and because of this during her black outs, I felt what darkness really was.

You changed me and I am stronger now. I understand who you are and I forgive you.

I’ve learnt as a single dad what its like to earn, struggle and where to draw the line. Everyone of you taught me and from that I understand

” Think like a parent, not a MAN/WOMAN”

The complexities of the person can interfere with the training of the next generation.

I left the man I was to be the dad I am. Creating real memories that form good lives.

The moral of this story is……..

Kids remember everything!

I do, and I just turned 40!



As a parent I’ve realized that this conquest of man or looking out for number one is wrong. This selfish pile up of everyone stepping over each other has created a scary world. A dark existence of neighbors fearing neighbors.
The lack of empathy and love for one and other. Kindness lost to cold stares at the weak and helpless.
Media filled with violence and villains put on pedestals.
There are heroes among us,yet they are over looked and ignored. True patrons of society never spoke of,nor are they glamorized like the tyrants that push there way through the crowd.
We make imaginary heroes that by no means can a man truly be. They embody all the virtues of men yet seem out of reach to follow and if followed society laughs at in disbelief.
As if told to get back to your common place.
I am a common man and I choose to believe. I choose to believe I can make a difference as do many others. I will not stand idly by while there is so much injustice.I’ve realized it’s not about me,it’s about our children. It’s about giving them a world worth believing in.
I will not prepare my children for this world,when I can prepare the world for my children.

We can make a difference when we all realize