Every night before I go to bed, I walk over to the front door and make sure it’s locked. It usually is. But I still do it every night anyway.
OCD? No. Habit? Not really. It’s purposeful. Even if it’s more of a symbolic gesture than anything. I’m securing the home and keeping my family safe.
I imagine the cavedaddy finishing up his stone carving for the evening (#amcarving), putting down his tablet and chisel, walking over to the cave entrance and rolling the big human-size rock into place.
I don’t recall if I did this before being married with a kid, but I am certain I have every night since.
Most often it is preceded by finishing up my writing for the evening, choosing “Sleep” in the pull-down on my tablet. Then, walking over and rolling my big human-size self into my place in bed.
Is locking the door a machismo thing? Does it make me feel like a man? Maybe deep down, but I’m hardly one to concern myself with gender stereotypes. (Even more so now, as the at-home parent.)
I have never been in a fight in my life. My body type has been quoted as “lithe.” My favorite alcoholic drink involves two types of fruit juice and vodka. But if it came down to it, I would do the unthinkable to protect the lives of my wife and child.
Then I’d get back to the dishes, laundry, and cooking.
I’m a husband.
I’m a father.
I am a man.
Lock. Deadbolt. Chain.
With thanks to Hilal Isler. This story was originally published in The Lighthouse.