May 16, 2019

"But I did learn something that makes my own hard days a little easier."

We got Steve Gleason, man. The former Saints player known for his blocked punt that became a symbol of hope during the team's first home game after Hurricane Katrina is on Nola Family’s cover, and we are excited.

In 2011, Gleason announced that he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis after being retired from the NFL since 2008. Fresh from his diagnosis, he and his wife, Michel, decided to have kids. A choice that I assume didn’t come easy.

Or maybe it did. Wanting to have kids is the easy part; the hard part is balancing it all: feedings, diapers, school, bathtimes, playing catch, appointments, lessons, friends, carpools, dinner… The Gleasons just had to forge their own way of dealing, and living, and parenting — like we all did (doing) in our own ways.

But I did learn something that makes my own hard days a little easier. Gleason’s oldest is the same age as my son, and after spending an ordinary afternoon in their home, It’s nice to see that it doesn't matter who you are — that you have to use a motorized wheelchair or played in the NFL — your kids are still going to ignore you.

Gleason mentioned to his son that, because a photo shoot was planned, he didn’t have to do his homework till later. His son was in earshot, but seemingly didn’t hear his dad’s computerized voice. Gleason repeated himself. "I know," his son yelled, annoyed that he wasted the two seconds that it took to stop and reply before he skipped out the backdoor.

We’re also excited because May/June is our Father’s Day issue. And Gleason seemed like the perfect fit. He’s accomplished, lives in New Orleans, a role model, and a dad. Honestly, this time of year seems to speed up. Summer vacation is coming, Memorial Day, Mother’s Day, Fourth of July, and I’m sure I’m missing some other day, too. So much to plan for, so much to rest from.

Then school begins again and I don’t even know where the time went. Did we even to go the beach, at least?

Just like other holidays, Father’s Day always seems to sneak up on me. Usually, I let Facebook remind of these dates when I have “Memories” to look back on, then I’m like, “Oh crap, today is so-and-so’s birthday.”

My son is still too young to date-track anyway, or even care. He just wants to know if it’s a no-school holiday. It’s still up to me to keep up with all the various celebrations throughout the year. I’m obviously killing it. But it got me thinking. When do I get the surprise bed-in-breakfast treat, which I then have to clean the food-tornado-ravaged kitchen that somehow has egg on the ceiling? Sounds like good times.

Here’s to being ignored for the rest of your life by the very people you’d murder for,
Tim Meyer

Check out our May/June 2019 cover story on Steven Gleason.

Join Our Playdate

Get our parenting e-newsletter and they won’t run with scissors.





Latest NOLA family-friendly stuff


Special needs in NOLA