Husband, father, pastor, author, blogger, friend…these are a few of the many hats David Barringer wears and he wears them very well. Dave, his wife Anne and their children Cami and Ethan moved to the Kalamazoo area 10 years ago when Dave accepted the position of lead pastor at Kalamazoo First Assembly. During that time, Dave has made a few personal transitions including that of being the father of young children to the father of a teenager and a young adult. We recently sat down over a cup of coffee to learn more about his life and his take on fatherhood & the ever-tricky work-life balance.
WHAT IS YOUR PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT AS A FATHER?
I think my proudest moment as a father is seeing my kids learn from their mistakes instead of blaming somebody for them. Watching them learn & grow makes me a proud dad.
WHAT WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT LESSON YOU LEARNED FROM YOUR FATHER?
Humility. There is a day where I got a spanking for bullying kids at the bus stop. Then he found out that it wasn’t me involved whatsoever and he sat down on the porch with me and ask for my forgiveness. That day I learned that dads are human and make mistakes and the more human and humbler I can be, the better I could be an example for my kids.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING TO DO WITH YOUR KIDS?
I don’t necessarily have a favorite thing to do with both of them. Because they are extremely different, I tailor-make my “favorite thing”based upon them. For Ethan, hiking and movies are our thing. For Cammi, coffee shops and Chinese food are our thing.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE NEW DADS?
My best piece of advice for any dad would be this: don’t love your children the same, love them different. I love both of my children immensely. I don’t love one more than the other, but both must be loved in a specific way that speaks to them.
HOW DO YOU BALANCE WORK AND FAMILY?
I have come to realize that there is no such thing as work-life balance. There are always going to be parts of your life that are out of balance. At times your home life is going to require much more attention than your work life. At other times, your professional life will be the focus and your personal life will take a back seat. I have found that a happy, productive life is about learning to mesh the different areas together.
Heather Dombos is a Florida girl who brings a little sass & southern charm to everything she does. This wife, dog mom, and closet Trekkie loves reading, hiking, long days on the beach and exploring Michigan.