if you’re reading this blog, then chances are you’ve been to a doctor dozens of times since you were born.  from your childhood yearly check-ups to broken arms, from booster shots and minor surgery to emergency rooms and major issues, we’ve all seen doctors.

the average investment in time a person makes to sign their name “MD” is 11 years.  1 1 years of schooling.  11 years of dedication, hard work, tests, progress, mistakes, and learning from mistakes culminates in the bestowing of the title of Doctor.

when a highschool student decides he wants to look into the field of medicine, the road ahead of him, no matter his choice, is mapped out.  should he want the distinction of signing his name with those two impressive letters, there is a plan for that.  should he want to go into nursing, or radiology, or plastic surgery, or dermatology or any of the dozens of choices he has, there is a defined plan for that path.  a plan of challenges, tests, steps that need to be taken and tasks that must be competed.

a student doesnt decide to become a doctor and then wonder how to get from where he is in life, to where he wants to be.  yes, there will be challenges.  he’ll have to sacrifice sleep, time, money and countless other little things.  he’ll face tremendous hardships, but the plan, the map is there.  if he sticks to the plan, at the end of those 11 years, he’s a doctor.

this doctor successfully pushed himself through 11 years of training.  valuable training, for this doctor may hold peoples hearts in his hands.  but if we’re lucky enough to be healthy people, our actual time spent with a doctor during a visit will probably be less than 10 minutes.  11 years of training for for 10 minutes of time.

so where am i going with this?

we know the training a doctor will go through before he is tasked with momentarily holding someones life in his hands.  it’s detailed and thorough, as well it should be.   doctors are initiated into their profession through a long process of tests, success, victories and i’m sure, failures.  and, not to belittle the profession by any means, but that’s just a doctor.  it’s what someone does, it’s not who they are.

with so much effort already put into the plan, the map for this person to become the doctor he or she wants to be, it’s surprising that the same amount of effort isn’t already in place for other things a man or woman may want to become.  what about the woman who wants to be a mother?  or the guy who wants to be the best husband he can be?

what training exists for a man who may hold a womans heart in his hands for the rest of his life…..

and as i sit here tonight, i think about the doctor.  and the years of schooling, of sitting under those who’ve gone before, learning from their mistakes.  of the countless hours studying any of hundreds of textbooks that cover thousands of situations he may find himself in.  and i wonder.

why is this fatherlessness thing so big to me?  i’m not going to be a doctor, that’s not my calling in life.  but someday, i hope to be a husband.  and thats huge.  someday i’ll hold the heart of a woman in the palm of my hands.  and i want to know what to do.  i want to have gone through 11 years of learning, studying, absorbing the wisdom and learning from the mistakes of the countless men who’ve gone before me.

i’m learning a lot about this thing called fatherlesness.  and as much as i know people dont view that as a big deal, it is.

it is for me.

why?  because there is a guy.  and because there is a girl.  and this girl deserves a man.  a man who knows how to love her.  and fight for her.  a man who knows where he came from, who’s been through the training and has learned from the elders, a man who is skilled and capable and strong of heart.  a man who doesnt question his lineage but knows the ancient paths that have been walked by men for millenia.  a man, initiated into this thing called manhood, by the men who’ve gone before.

why is all this so important?  because beyond doctorates and medical degrees, beyond 11 years of schooling and 10 minutes per patient, beyond whatever profession i chose, who i am and who i become are infinitely more important.

and because loving her will be the most important thing i ever do.