3/12/08

Should I love my kids more than my wife?

This is from an email thread I am having with a friend/colleage of mine - about our photography businesses first, but it quickly took a turn I thought suitable for reprinting here. [edited for length and names have been changed to protect the innocent!] Also, on my photography website [Wade Gardner Photography] I have a list of "My Roles, in order"

Husband, Father, Friend, Photographer, Musician, Painter, Writer. 

FYI



I like the "my roles..." thing. As an aside, I've been wondering internally, if/when there is a point when the order of the first two flip? Just me being "deep" ... or something like that.


Laters:

Peter


Peter

To answer your "aside" question - never. Love your wife more than your children. You want your kids to know how to treat a woman and how to be treated by a man. You also want your kids to leave the house when they are older, not your wife.


You chose your bride, you don't choose your kids. 


If your children know that you love their mother, they won't doubt that you love them, but if they don't know that you love their mother, there will be a kernel of doubt about your love for them.


My thoughts.


Soli Deo Gloria

Wade Gardner


Makes sense... but then there is also the argument that my wife and I "chose" each other, but our child was entrusted to us by God. I know that part of this is going to sound horrible (and is not indicative anything actually going on in my life)... but my love for my child is totally unconditional. My love for my wife is built on trust and is very strong, but I don't know that it could never be broken. I pray that it will never be tested that strongly. 


It seems silly to ask "which do I love more" - at this point in my life, I feel more connected to Petra than to Natashca, but who is to say that will never change as Natashca grows up and develops her personality. I know that Petra and Natashca have a stronger bond that Natashca and I, but that only makes sense, given what they have been through together and that they spend more time together. 


I'm sure that I'm just over-analyzing the whole thing. It's what I do. Damn you for making me think!    ;^)


Laters,

-Peter



Peter - 


You are correct when you write - 

"but my love for my child is totally unconditional. My love for my wife is built on trust and is very strong, but I don't know that it could never be broken. "


and that is exactly why your love for your wife needs to be stronger than that love for your child. Do you see what I am saying? You don't make a choice about your child. At some point, they will be their own person, have their own world, and you will have an ever decreasing part of that. If you make it clear in your actions that your relationship to your wife is paramount, you will be teaching them a most valuable lesson. THE most valuable lesson. More important than how to use money, to read, to do math. Our relationships are our most important treasures. How to treat, no, how to serve people is the most important thing we can pass on to our kids. 


Love your wife more, it takes more work precisely because it is a choice. Also, your life will be all the more pleasant. I look at the incredibly profound words from a very unlikely source - Torii (mis)Spelling - on this matter. Her father, Aaron, told her outright that he loved her more than he loved her mom, and her mom was in the next room and overheard. That, right there, colored the relationship between them, and we all know how nasty that got. (maybe you don't, and I don't really know why I know that, but, uh, yeah, Amber gets People magazine, and that is why I know - not that I personally follow…)


Anyway. I am blogging about this exact deal - can I use our conversation? I won't use names if you would prefer. www.betterhusbandbetterdad.blogspot.com. I have been too busy to update it for a while, and I can't update it from work, but this is exactly the type of good, two way conversation that I want for the site. I plan on linking it to my wedding site, too, as a resource for new husbands and husbands to be. 


There is one role that I left out, but not really on purpose. It really should be first but I don't exactly know how to put it - small "c" christian - worshipper - jesus-freak - zealot  - the whole God, Family, Football thing. Love God first, give Him your best, the rest will fall into place. I am coming around to that idea more and more each day. I can only put my faith in one of three things - the world that surrounds me - myself - God. The world is so out of my control. I can only control my reactions to it. I am horrified by the thought of putting faith in myself to get by. God seems to be the logical choice. But, you see, it doesn't fit into one word. 


Soli Deo Gloria

Wade Gardner


So, you want a couple to say, "Wow, Wade really Phlogged us!"? Maybe. Could be a marketing thing. Get married and get Phlogged!   ;^)


Older than dirt? Wow, I thought we were still newlyweds!    ;^)


Laters,

-Peter

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Oh yeah - dirt.   


As for your prices. What do you want to make? What is that price that in four years, given an increasing number of weddings that you would be doing each year, you would like to be at? Think about where you want to be then. Now set your price at that point. This will do two things. A: Force you to live up to it. B: Build your business slowly, but at the right price point. Amber is having a difficult time with this idea, because she, and everyone that she knows, wouldn't spend over $1900 on a photographer. I have to tell her that I put my price right on the web page, so those people that call me already know how much I cost, and are willing to pay it. 


Soli Deo Gloria

Wade Gardner

whereswade@mac.com


[my] pricing...

A friend of mine has started a biz as a wedding coordinator and has been throwing contacts my way. Some of her clients don't have a big budget, so I keep hearing from her that my packages really offer a great value. For a weekend, plus a handful of nights worth of work, what I'm charging now, really isn't bad, considering it's something that I love.


4 years... I guess I have a hard time visualizing that far. Heck, I thought I'd be part owner of Candide Press by now, but a new house and child tend to change life a lot. There are so many things that I would love to do. Printing is one. The Apple Store is another - sounds sad, but I really do love my time there. If I ever thought it could pay enough, I might consider going full time, but I doubt that is a possibility. I have another gig that I'm starting doing online tutorials. I'm doing a series on FileMaker Pro. It's little 2-3 minute screen captures with a voice over. It's fun and the money is really good, so there is a potential for a career there too. Photography is another passion. I'd like to think that if I really wanted it, that I could "make it" doing that, but I'm too guttless to make the leap. (see above note about mortgage, kid, etc)


So, right now I have 4 passions that could be careers. One of them is, and three are hobbies... And all of them are suffering because of the others. Not to mention the time it takes away from family. I guess I'm a work-a-holic or something. I just really enjoy all those things and the fact that people will pay me for it is bonus. And lately, the fact that people will pay me for it has been a necessity. Energy bills just blew my mind this winter and we found out that we are going to lose our renter in May/June-ish. If you know someone looking for a townhome to rent, let me know.


Wow, I'm really getting deep with the emails today. Not sure what is up with that. I really should get some work done at my main career...


Laters

Peter


Pricing - please do not allow yourself (and this is as much for myself that I say this as for you) to think that because you love something, it diminishes what you should receive as compensation. Think about the four hobbies that contribute ever so slightly to your income. If you price yourself as a pro, you don't NEED to accept work. You take it when it comes, and it sustains you through when you aren't working. If you don't price yourself correctly, you will soon NOT love it anymore, as it is work that you HAVE to take - and you may feel as though you cannot say no to anyone. That is what is unfair to yourself, to Petra, and to your daughter, who's name always seems to escape me. (Natashca?) Charge what your time is worth. Actually, think of it this way - what is your daughter's time worth. How much should you get paid to leave her with mom for a Saturday? And be completely honest. Then charge that.


Soli Deo Gloria

Wade Gardner


That makes a heckuvalota sense. Please do use the conversation if you feel, but I would prefer to remain nameless in this case.


Just curious... why do you say "small "c" christian"?

But, yes, there has to be a good word for what you are trying to say... I understand.


Laters,

-Peter

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Peter

So as to be unaffiliated with any one church. I consider myself Lutheran, because that is my upbringing. That is the capital - L - which is, in my view, largely affiliated with human religions and with outward appearances, and I so wish to not worry about the outward appearance of my faith, except that it reflect the inner truth (and it really does - the truth I live is less than that which I profess, which is less than what it should be). So, small "c". I am nothing, Christ is everything. How do I live that? How do I profess that which is greater than my ability to profess?


Soli Deo Gloria

Wade Gardner


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