Monday, December 13, 2010

There's No Replacement For Daddy

Tonight I am heading downtown to check out Monday Night RAW. I’m going with my cousin, my nephew, and my little brother from the mentoring program. It should be a lot of fun. My first experience as a mentor has gone pretty well. My only issue has been trying to remember what a mentor is supposed to do. The kid is only ten years old and it’s hard for me to just talk with him about things without fussing and telling him what he should do. According to what the mentor training says our job is to just help them work through issues and not take the place of a guardian. I guess that’s for the best but it still feels strange to me because Big Cliff was my friend and he helped me work through a lot of things but at 10 years old he was still the boss of me and didn’t hesitate to shake the life out of my body if I was tripping.

My little brother could be on the verge of having that kind of relationship with his dad. He just got released from prison about a week ago. I’m not sure how a mentor comes into play when your own father is around. My dad would have taken it as an insult if I would have been in a mentoring program but he was there every day. Maybe this brother won’t mind since he has a lot of things to do to get his own life together. Only time will tell. Once I was informed that he would be released I already told myself that if he steps up and decides that he is ready to be a full time presence in the kid’s life I will call and check on him occasionally but get out of the way. I’m not sure if that’s what I should do but that’s what my instinct tells me.

The close it came to his dad getting released the better his attitude and behavior got in school. It’s too early in the day for black father bashing but there’s one thing I am sure of and that’s that all these kids want their own father involved. I don’t care if they are 5, 15 or 25 years old; when it all comes down to it you can’t beat the power of having a relationship with your dad. For most of his life my little brother never had that chance and now he does. I really hope things work out and I can lend my time for another young brother that didn’t get the opportunity to have that reconnection. If it doesn’t work out then he can always call me. I’m looking forward to the day I call to check up on him and all he does is ramble on and on about all the cool stuff he and his dad did together. That will be a great conversation and we can add having awesome dads to the list of things we have in common like our love of professional wrestling and being good looking black men from New Orleans.

1 comment:

bayoucreole said...

Amen to that Cliff.