When we brought our little human home for the first time, we were jittery, wild-eyed noobs who had to deal with the immediate and POTENTIALLY disastrous task of looking after, feeding, changing and entertaining it whilst in a perpetual state of exhaustion, confusion and dismay. It could have proved to be the kind of task a grown man would like to shy away from given all of the other responsibilities social convention presses upon us (Bread-winning, DIY and all that). During those 4:30am feeds, I could sense both my wife and I, losing the will to live under these shabby living conditions. Boy, was it HARD!
Tiredness can really send your mind into a tailspin. When this is coupled with strong emotions, work, family and the ever-growing demands of the child, you can really feel yourself losing it. Time goes by brutally slowly and lightning fast all at the same time. Its an outright maddening experience.
The saving grace, is that this feeling of your mind being a madhouse doesn’t last. The real gems and fruits of parenthood slowly become apparent.
Everyday, something new and wonderful will begin to happen. She’ll smile, she’ll giggle, and she’ll laugh heartily! And this process of evolution will happen on every facet of her development and YOU, the lucky bastard that you are; get a front row seat for all of it. She’ll focus on the sponge ball one day, she’ll reach for the ball the next, and before you know it, she’ll have leaned forward, grabbed the ball and shoved it into her dribbly little mouth.
This brings me to some of the things I most adore, and some of the things I’m most looking forward to about being a Dad.
8 things I LOVE about being Dad
- Having a family that depends on me. The sense of responsibility is so empowering. The fact that my girls need me fills me with such a sense of purpose and helps me strive to be better…
- The gadgets… Oh the gadgets. The engineering prowess that has gone into some of the things invented for babies is staggering. There’s a lot of shit too but even the rubbish has its charms! (Bloom Highchair: Winner – Wet Wipe Warmer: Loser)
- Being able to be a kid again. To be fair, I never stopped. I’ve always felt that its important to keep a firm grip on the things you love as a child, and that sense of innocence and wonder will help keep your world an optimistic place (very simplistic, but there is a science to it – maybe for another day J). You learn the difference between good and evil from comic books before you care about what’s happening in the larger world. Those life lessons are so very valuable. And in all honesty, I can’t wait to watch Frozen 4billion times.
- The opportunity to pass down knowledge is unbelievably rewarding. I consider myself a bottomless pit of what has to date been completely useless information. But when it comes to my little one, needing help with homework on the ancient Egyptians, guess who’ll be there with all that pointless historical info at hand…? THIS GUY!
- I’m learning more about myself. My motivations and reasoning has changed. Its so much more home-centric and I’m slowly developing a ridiculously high value on my time. If you’re not making my time away from my wife and kid worthwhile, you need to move out of my way so I can get in my car and drive home. I have less and less time for bullsh*t that I may have entertained in a previous life. It seems I finally have a reason to blow things off and I don’t have to say yes to everything. I’m feeling very important… and I like it 🙂
- BFFS – No matter how much anyone tells you that you will love your child, you wont know just HOW much until she’s here. It makes me giddy! I have a best friend forever, with whom my relationship eclipses any friendship I have ever known (sorry guys and girls). I have a buddy to talk to, eat with, share things with and confide in, forever more!
- Throwing her in the air, chasing her around the house, playing hide and seek and the general mucking around that will come, utterly excites me. The idea of painting, cooking and tearing around a park on bikes makes my heart bubble like a fart in a full bath.
- Just being able to watch. Observing and reflecting on what I see happening before my very eyes is something to be treasured. Just today I saw my baby laying on her front trying to propel herself forward with her legs. She looked like a little frog in a pond. The little mite can’t do it yet, but the beautiful part is that one day soon, she will be able to, to the very best of her ability.
I already know that watching her grow is going to be amazing. I guess the idea of really investing time into the simple exercise of just appreciating what you have is something that gets lost in some peoples minds due to the manic side of parenting. Step back, and do a stock take on the gems that have been bestowed upon you. It’s all about the simple things… It really is an upper level of consciousness and love that you never knew existed.
Its challenging, but a challenge worth taking on.