The brilliance of the show This is Us is the use of universal themes. We can all relate to parts of the show–if not all of it–at times. Tragedy mixed with normal life, relationships stretched to breaking points, and family dynamics that resemble our own: there’s literally something for everyone. It’s downright brilliant.
Jack and Rebecca face challenges in their marriage just like everyone else. Ok, not EVERYONE has triplets, one of whom was adopted. But beyond that, every married couple can relate to some of the issues they face. And aren’t they just the cutest couple, in spite of it all?
But let’s talk about Jack, the dad. I mean, the writers of that show make Jack seem like the ultimate “DAD OF THE YEAR.” He’s “real” enough to be human, but at the same time, he’s almost superhuman in his fathering. He always knows what to say, what vacation his family needs, and how to handle crazy children. He helps around the house (hello, clean kitchen–before THE crockpot incident) and he’s a doting husband.
Perfection? Maybe. Fiction? Definitely.
I live with my very own Jack Pearson. That’s not his name, of course. He’s Tom. He’s even got a beard. But that’s how I know Jack’s secret.
And it makes me want to be a better mom.
His secret is that he’s selfless. He sacrifices everything for his family. In my house, that doesn’t necessarily look like running back into a burning house for the family pet. (In fact, I’ve made my husband promise to never, ever do that!) In my house, “Jack” saves parts of his dinner in case the kids want seconds. In my house, “Jack” spends his Saturdays playing in the yard with our kids, or taking them to a park while I go get groceries. In my house, he carries our little girl to her bed every night because she likes to fall asleep on his pillow. In my house, he’s the hero. He’s the favorite parent.
Because he thinks nothing of giving up what he’d rather be doing for our sakes. He is a superdad, let me tell you.
And he makes me want to be a better mom. Because it’s what Jesus would do. He gave everything, including His life, for us. And there are many ways I can do better–I can be more selfless–to point my kids to Jesus too. I see Jesus (not Jack Pearson, haha!) in my husband every day, and every day I am challenged to put others first. Sometimes I’m terrible at it. (Motherhood is exhausting! It’s hard to be selfless if given half a chance to be selfish!) Like Rebecca, I have to “try” to be that parent, whereas my husband seems to be that way without effort. But that’s certainly a stretch; who wouldn’t want to gobble up their full serving of steak after a long day at work? It can’t be easy and effortless to save some aside for the kids, just in case. But he does it. Because that’s how he shows us the sacrificial love of Christ–always putting others first.
Perfect? No. SuperDad? Definitely.