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A Good Man



What exactly do people mean when they refer to someone as a “Good Man?” It is a phrase that I have commonly heard, but everyone has their own definition of what that means. I wanted to share what I mean when I use that phrase.


When I think of what I consider a “good man” I think of my dad first. My dad, to me is what a good man looked and acted like. All people are flawed, even our dads, but in my experience, they are also irreplaceable. Let me give you a few examples of the kind of man I grew up admiring.


My dad believed that his family and his faith were the most important things in his life. He was not a prideful man, nor do I believe he ever fully recognized how incredible he was, but he was in fact incredible. When I was little my dad worked nights as a caretaker for the local school board, which meant he was not around in the evenings during the week. I know this was hard for him, especially because he and my mom had 5 children within a 7-year period. Even though he did what he had to make sure the bills were paid, he still made sure he had time with us. He and my mom arranged that on Friday nights we would grab dinner to go, pick up a couple of movies from the local video store, drive to meet dad at whatever school he was working at, and spend time with him. We had access to the gymnasium and would play on whatever apparatus was set up already or shoot hoops. After we exhausted ourselves, we would gather in the library to eat dinner and to watch movies. I know it may not seem like it would be a huge deal to some, but for me, it is one of my favourite memories from my childhood.


On that note, my dad also took care of his family. Not just his wife and kids, but also his parents and grandparents. He set an example of what a generational love and commitment to others looked like.


Kindness. My dad was a very kind man and to my knowledge did not aim to intentionally hurt people. Like I said before, he was not perfect, but he was not one to be cruel. Even when I was a child, I recall that he taught me about generosity. It didn’t always have to be about materials things. I could be a simple act such as shoveling the neighbour’s sidewalk or washing the dishes after as meal at grandmas, so she didn’t have to. My dad tried to bring joy to his family and friends. I will never forget the Saturday morning he woke me up early and told me to hurry up and get dressed, we were going shopping. I scurried out of bed and met him and my brothers in the living room where my dad handed us each a $20 bill and said we were going to the store, and we could buy whatever we liked with our money. OMG! For me, $20 was a lot of money and I could get a lot of stuff! It was such a fun morning wandering around the toy store and ultimately settling on a ButterBear Wuzzles watch. For anyone who does not know who the wuzzles are, shame on you! Kidding…they were a cartoon from the 1980’s that featured a variety of animals characters that were a mix of two different animal species. I adored ButterBear, who as you can guess is a mix of half butterfly and half bear. Plus, 100% awesomeness. 


For me a good man is strong in his convictions and in turn respects others and their convictions. My dad was a man of morals, and his faith and religion were important to him. He firmly believed in a forever family and that we would not be separated by death but would meet again after this life. He also allowed for other ideas to be considered as well. Whether or not he believed something was right or wrong, black or white, he tried not to judge. The ability to be able to empathize with another soul and appreciate their point of view is from what I have experienced far too rare. If we could all embrace something as profound as empathy, the whole world could be altered. Think about it and imagine how the world looks from another point of view. Cool, eh?!


My dad was an affectionate man. He did not buy into the whole idea that a man had to be unfeeling and in turn unaffectionate to be a good man. Instead, he and my mom instilled in us an openness regarding affection to others. I never felt like I had to be embarrassed to ask for a hug or to be held by my parents. One of the most important things that they tell new parents is to have that skin on skin contact with your child. To hold them. I don’t think I ever greet or say goodbye to my loved ones without giving them a hug or some sort of affection. For some that may sound foreign or way too much. To me, it is important. My dad loved to tease his kids and grandkids. I can recall I would sometimes sit and watch him shave some mornings. I’d just be chatting away and suddenly, he would be chasing me around the house with a face covered in shaving cream, while trying to give me a kiss. I would run around squealing and pretending to be annoyed, but in truth I loved it. I loved when he did eventually catch me and wrap me in his arms for a hug and smoosh shaving cream all over my face.


A good man is also a dreamer. He has dreams and ideas and works hard. I am sure my father did not set out in the world to become a caretaker, nor did he allow it to define him. He had many dreams. He wanted to be a pilot, an artist, a singer, a teacher, a father among many other things. And even though it took him years, he did eventually go back to university, work at night, raise a family and became a teacher. He was not athletic, but he loved to watch us play sports. He was the type of man who when I was born drew a sweet scene from Sleeping Beauty by hand for my birth announcement and sent it out. He sang all the time and encouraged us all to sing with him. He had a fantastic voice and to this day it still one of my favourites to hear, even if I can only hear it through a recording now in days. I would look forward to the evenings when he was home and would put us to bed. He would first come to the girl’s room and sing a few songs to my sister and I, tuck us in and then go across the hall to the boy’s room and repeat. I could hear his voice carry down the hall and would fall asleep content in the knowledge that I was loved. That is a good man.


There are so many reasons that someone can be considered “a good man” and I really hope that all of you have someone who has been that kind of an example. A man who is by your standards (not the worlds) a man worth admiring and a man worth shadowing.


I often look at my brothers and the fathers they have become and see so much of my dad in them. They may not appreciate some of the nuances they have inherited but watching them with their children is like turning back the clock for me. A gift as I see my dad in them and the way they hold their children and how they care for them.


A good man isn’t always born to a family where the right example is set. Sometimes he chooses to be that kind of man. I am so grateful that I have been surrounded by good men my whole life who have shown me so many things. Ultimately, I hope someday I am able to raise one of those good men, in this life or the next.


Much love.




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2 Comments


Allie Misinchuk
Allie Misinchuk
Feb 16, 2022

I teared up too! I loved your dad. He was always such a kind man and so genuine.

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jcramp1954
jcramp1954
Feb 16, 2022

You made me cry.

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