The Tools My Father Did Not Have
Growing up my father was busy with work...a lot. There were many a times when he was away jet setting to another country trying to make ends meet for his family. This left my mother to take care of many responsibilities in his absence and she did so with as much efficiency and strength as she could muster. During that era, my dad did not have access to the internet or tablets with Skype, Facetime, or any other chat application you can think of that exists in an app store today so he could call home and spend some time talking to my mom, my siblings, and I.
All he had was the telephone and the mail service. If that is any indication to you about the era in which he was working, you could add facsimile and telegraph to that small list as well. With the exception of the mail service, none of these technical marvels of the time were cheap to operate or consume. Which meant that for my dad, he would have to settle for the occasional five-minute phone call or a postcard if he was away longer than a few days.
The point being that how he and his generation of fathers communicated were much simpler and incredibly expensive if you consider the cost of a long distance phone call during that time period. The tools available to him and his generation were inefficient when compared to the near instant means of communication us dads of today enjoy.
Much of what my father had to do then in person can now be done through technical marvels we use daily. The very same marvels my kids get to take advantage of as "toys". To me, the technological advances of recent times has allowed me to remain close to my family even when I am far away.
This Father's Day, I would like to remind myself and dads of my generation that we are fortunate to have the breadth of communication devices we have today. Although many-a-times we feel that these devices keep us tethered to the work we so passionately enjoy, it is also a tool that allows us to stay connected with our families. We are more connected today than our fathers were before us.
To my dad who spent many days and weeks away from his family and had to cherish the few minutes on a telephone as opposed to the audio and video marvel we generally call "video chat", thank you for all that you did. I know now, as a father, how precious the few minutes of hearing the voice and seeing your loved one means.
To my fellow dads, let's enjoy the marvels we call "business tools" that is afforded to our generation. If it were not for these amazing tools, we would not be so connected after all. In the end, the price of being tethered is worth the smile from our kids. Happy Father's Day!
A software engineer, product nerd, educator, and martial artist with a knack for solving business problems.
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