Wow, a month has gone by already and the launch of the website and blog have had some great reactions, reviews and accepted right away as a place to go for help managing the stay at home dad world. We hope to continue to build on this success and keep things fresh and relevant for all.
There have been many of you that have contacted me with the launch of the website and I will get back to all of you soon. This time of year is a super busy time for me. Besides my dad duties and running a household with a spouse that travels two weeks out of the month for business, I also help coach and manage a high school rowing team. This is championship season and we race weekly at large regattas and my double duties for the team keep me jumping. And that brings me to the subject of my contribution this month.
As I mentioned in my first blog I’m the father of older children and I frequently get asked; “what do you do with your days now that your kids are older”. Well, every family is different and in our house, besides the regular duties of food shopping, cooking, cleaning, and laundry duties, I choose to spend my free time volunteering in my community coaching and mentoring young folks by coaching Crew, or rowing. It is very rewarding to coach young athletes and help them develop into young adults. Each year a new crop of freshmen come to the team and to watch and help mold these seniors who graduate 4 years later is very satisfying and helps to keep my sanity from the daily duties of running a household.
I strongly recommend volunteering in your community for several reasons for dads who decide to continue in their primary caregiver role especially if you stay on after your children reach school age. Beside needing a flexible schedule due to school holiday and summer schedules, volunteering gives you the opportunity to stay active and keep your skills sharp if you volunteer in a role that mirrors your past professional role. Now it’s not always easy to find volunteer duties that accomplish this goal, but it’s worth a try and any volunteer work looks good on a resume should you reenter the working world.
For me, I am a former fleet manager for public and private fleets. Managing a company’s vehicle fleet was a rewarding job for a former mechanic and shop manager. Moving into the management side of the automotive industry always interested me and I was able to accomplish this goal in my professional career ending up as the fleet supervisor for a suburb of Dallas, TX. The management of a high school rowing team fits nicely with my fleet management skills. I have racing shells that need to be purchased and maintained. These boats need to be on a replacement schedule and regularly maintained. The coach’s launches that follow the boats are in constant need of repair and upkeep. I have to negotiate contracts for repair work and for the location we practice from during the season. I need to find off season storage and maintain equipment and insurance lists and policies, many of the same things I did when I managed a fleet of vehicles.
So you can see that there are volunteer jobs out there that dovetail nicely with what you did in your last career field. Think outside the box sometimes to see what you can do for your community and more importantly, for yourself.
Have a great month,
Mike Stilwell, President