It seems that as I get older and my son grows up I tend to find less and less time to be able to get out on the boat and fish. Between coaching soccer practice and then all the games as well as other after school activities life just gets full up and the time on the water starts to suffer.
Now don’t get me wrong, spending quality time with my son is a very important thing for me. The weekends just get full with holiday activities and there just aren’t times that I am able to wet a line or at least get him out to wet a line. I do, however, try to at least find a pond or two to take him too. It has been more of an enjoyable experience to allow him to hit the water and catch a few fish rather than me actually wetting a line.
This busyness does not keep me from being deep into my passion it just hinders the ability to actually get out and be on the water. Instead of being able to fish multiple times a week I just have learned to settle for a time or two a month. This doesn’t change my attitude or love of the sport, it just means that those times that are available to wet a line are much more enjoyable and important to me.
Instead of being able to be on the water we need to learn that there are other ways to refine our sport and to enjoy what we do. These times can be used to learn new things and to change the way we look at how we fish. This is a great time to catch up on a lot of reading that I may have been putting off. It is time to do some of the things that get neglected when you spend so much time on the water.
Just because a fishing rod isn’t in my hand on a constant basis doesn’t mean that I am not thinking about fishing or learning about new ways to fish different bodies of water. Time spent off the water can be just as important and often times more important than times on the water. These times can be spent organizing equipment and getting to some of the neglected activities like changing out line or reels or sharpening hooks.
We all have busy schedules in this day and age and when you are a single dad it can make things a bit more difficult. However, this is when you need to learn to adapt and overcome. I know that soon there will come the days where my son will be up at the crack of dawn with me to head out in the boat and fish right along beside me. This is something that I look forward to very much.
Being a fisherman and an avid outdoorsman doesn’t always mean that you are our on the water or in the woods on a continuous basis. Life just doesn’t work that way in all cases. If I had a normal life I might be able to fish more than I do now, but these are the sacrifices one makes to build a life with their child and also work on building a life with a new family.
Sure that last part might sound crazy, but I do have another chance at a life with a new family and that can also take up my time. I am in love with a woman who also enjoys the outdoors and with that comes the responsibility of two young girls. This can prove as a huge challenge to learn how to balance life, but I think that we are doing a great job of it.
Jumping in the boat at the spur of the moment is a thing of the past, but planning trips to go is something that is part of the future. This has given me the opportunity to not only teach my son more about the sport, but to also introduce my girlfriend and her two daughters to the sport of fishing.
You see just because I don’t have a fishing rod in my hand on a daily basis doesn’t mean that I am not deeply involved in the sport. It certainly doesn’t mean that you stop learning and honing your craft. In fact, I feel it is the complete opposite. There is a huge laundry list of items that I have developed that will be used the next time the boat does splash down in the water.
Life is busy and if you are not busy then I am envious of you. However, I would not trade my life for anyone. Fishing is still a major part of my life, however so is family and learning to combine the two is the challenge that I am sure that we all face at some time or another in our lives. This challenge is well worth the effort and it should be looked at as a thing that is important in your life.
With walls and walls full of fishing rods and just about any lure, line, or reel you could want I spend many a night just sitting in the basement and thinking about my next trip on the water. Baits get reorganized and line gets changed on reels. I will also make time after my boy goes to bed to maybe build a fishing rod or two for friends.
It is these little things that teach me how to enjoy the sport more and that allow me to be a part of the passion that I love so much. Just because I don’t have water underneath me doesn’t mean that I am not thinking about fishing or learning more about my next adventure. It just means that the time on the water will be that much more special and that I have many more adventures ahead of me.