Sometimes, we do things that don’t make sense; becoming a parent falls squarely in that category. Financially, it is probably the worst thing you can do (except that tax credit, right? right?). You spend money on clothes, diapers, education, diapers, toys, extra food, diapers and hundreds of other things that you would never have to buy otherwise. It limits where you can go, what you can do, and how you spend your time. It certainly isn’t sanitary.
That being said, becoming a father is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Now, I will be the first to admit that I would have been happy with waiting a bit longer to have kids. It was something I wanted to do, but there were other things I wanted to do first. I wanted to travel abroad with Roni. I wanted to be able to finish school, and get settled. I was convinced that there wouldn’t be any way to make ends meet. However, knowing what I know now, I wouldn’t trade being a dad now for any of those things.
There is something about seeing the Bwun or Jr. for the first time that just filled me with a love that made me want to protect and look after them at any cost. It is the greatest thing to see the Bwun return that love to me. I love that when I come home from classes, he calls out “Pa!” right when I open the door (no matter what room he is in). I love that when I leave, he begins to frantically search for his shoes so he can come too. I love that he will run up to me just to give me a hug. I love that I can say “where’s my smooch??” and he will come over and give me a kiss on the cheek. I love that I can tell him that he’s my guy, and he said “yeah. guys.”
Being a parent this past 1 year 8 months and 17 days has taught me more about life than any of those other experiences could have. Yes, it means we can’t go out whenever we want. Yes, it is pretty much the reason that for 2 years we haven’t seen a movie in the theater. But I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
tl;dr- being a parent is the best!
It’s also for crisis, caught-off-guard, calm, and controlled.
The last two weeks have been so unbelievably crazy (C is for crazy, as well). I was just not expecting to have jr a month early, and I had such short notice to mentally and emotionally prepare for having a baby – just a few hours, when I thought I’d have at least 3 weeks. While we waited for the antibiotic to cycle through, I babbled to the Romgi incessantly. I was frightened, and uncertain, but I felt like I had to keep those emotions at bay. C is for coping. I shoved the fear and uncertainty to the back corners of my mind and decided to deal with the situation as best I could – which really meant that I didn’t address how I was feeling. It was time for survival, not ridiculous things like emotions.
I don’t think I’ve gone off of “survival mode” since then. I kept waiting for – keep waiting for – some sort of breakdown, where I suddenly realize that I now have two kids, that my life is complete pandemonium (C is for chaos), that I can’t handle this. I expected that once the breakdown came, I could process what happened and move on with life. But the breakdown has eluded me. Is this good? Or does it just mean I’m in denial? C is for confusion.
Tonight the Romgi stayed home with the kids while I went out shopping. It was time to face the facts, to talk myself through the situation and figure out why my reaction to it has been so different from what I anticipated. C is for content, composed, calm. I won’t go so far as to say I feel any of those most of the time, but I do feel content-composed-calm often lately. And it’s been unnerving. I am not a C is for chill person. So why did I seem to be taking everything in stride?
I eventually came to the conclusion that either the breakdown is still forthcoming or I’ve simply mellowed out. A lot. I realized that there are an infinite number of things outside my control, and that worrying or stressing about them won’t help – it will just make me feel worried and stressed. I realized that I can’t change everything I dislike about myself all at once, and that in trying to improve my bad habits there will be setbacks and mistakes – and I’ll have to take those in stride, as well. I realized that life isn’t as hard as I imagined if I am willing to ask for help, and that I have to ask for and accept help from others – I can’t accomplish much of anything all by myself. No one can. I realized that I am vulnerable and weak and in need of help…and then I realized that it’s okay to be that way. I can always find the C is for comfort and C is for courage I need to keep going.
I hope my thoughts don’t seem tangential to my original topic. It was important for me to understand that, flawed as I am, I’m C is for capable of handling whatever C is for challenge I may face. Yes, I now have two kids; yes, I was unprepared for having a new baby to take care of; yes, it’s trickier than just having the Bwun. But none of those things is really a C is for crisis. Maybe my breakdown hasn’t come because this simply isn’t that difficult (yet).
C is for certain. I feel certain that things will be okay. Especially since my C is for caring Visiting Teacher brought us dinner tonight, complete with C is for cookies.
You know what else? C is for comment. Please tell me your thoughts on what I’ve said.