Are Dads The New Mom?

Zacharie and I were photographed and interviewed (okay, I was interviewed) for an article by Denise Ryan in this weekend’s Vancouver Sun about Father’s Day. Her thesis was about Dads becoming more involved; Are Dads The New Mom?

20090620 Vancouver sun

“By the time I was 35, I had resigned myself to not having children of my own,” said Bishop.

“I am pretty selfish. When I saw how other people were with their children, it was pretty intimidating.”

Co-host of Virgin Radio’s popular afternoon show in the 3 to 6 slot, Bishop is an information addict and pop-culture junkie — but you could also call him a media artist.

He sucks up cultural information, reorganizes it into a dazzling format that makes listeners laugh and makes them feel smart.

Staying on top of everything is literally a 24-hours-a-day job.

Before becoming a dad, Bishop was plugged in all the time. It wasn’t just his job. It was what he loved to do — and it gave his life meaning.

Now there is something else that gives his life meaning — a two-year-old named Zacharie, his son with fiance Jen Cybak.

“I’m number 2 now,” he says with a laugh.

The turnaround for Bishop came the instant Zacharie was born. “It’s like a switch that just flicks on inside you.”

He hasn’t jumped off the career path, but he has thrown himself headfirst into fatherhood, and that means he’s had to change a few things.

Like his fiance, he’s doing the juggling act between a career and hands-on parenting.

He’s pretty much given up golf. He squeezes culture and information binges into Zacharie’s nap times when he’s on a “daddy day,” and on Friday nights he’s more likely to be “parked in the kiddie pool in the backyard” than out on the town.

Bishop grew up in a traditionally structured home. “My dad worked a lot, and I was closer to my mom, although now I’m very close to my dad.”

He appreciates the societal changes that have made hands-on parenting part of the deal for dads. “Everybody has to be the mother and the father in these dual working households.”

Fatherhood, for Bishop, has been a journey of rediscovering and reliving childhood.

“So many things you take for granted; a water fountain, a dog running, a bursting yellow flower. To experience the world with someone discovering it for the first time — it’s a chance to reset the odometer,” he said.

As for Zacharie, he’s also discovering the world through his dad’s eyes — and that makes him a pretty plugged-in kid. He Twitters, loves YouTube and has his own Facebook page.

He also loves to grocery shop with his dad on Saturday mornings while his mom sleeps in.

“It’s been awesome,” said Bishop. “I was thrilled to have my life change.”
[Vancouver Sun]

Wow, I’m absolutely flattered by the story Denise put together and the great shot that Ian Lindsay grabbed of Zacharie and I rolling down one of our favourite slides.

Happy Father’s Day.

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