Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Joys of Parenthood

It seems an eternity since I last wrote.  One of the biggest changes that can happen in a person's life happened for us 7 months ago yesterday when our baby boy was placed in our arms.  Our whole life changed.  Our priorities changed.  Our schedules changed.  The way we spend our time, how we spend our money, who we spend most of our time talking about, it all changed.  As any new parent will tell you, some of it sucks.  Getting up at night to feed him is not my favorite thing to do.  Changing a dirty diaper is even farther down on the list.  And getting peed or thrown up on?  I can definitely say that's the least favorite.  But to stop at that only tells a small sliver of the story.  And I think it does a great disservice to couples who are thinking about starting a family.  Most of what we heard from parents before we got our son was:  "You won't get any sleep.  The baby will be crying all the time.  You'll always be covered in pee, poo, and puke.  Your sex life will die.  You won't have any money.  Basically, your life will be over."  And truthfully, there are little parts of that (varying in percentages depending on the baby) that are true.  But do you know what?  Most of the time it's super awesome!  In fact, I'd say it's 95% awesome and 5% suck.  Being a parent is in the top three of the most amazing things that has happened to me.  I LOVE my kid.  I love seeing him smile and hearing him laugh.  I love watching him explore and learn new things.  I love giving him a bath and rocking him to sleep.  I love how he holds onto my leg with all the strength in his little arms and hands because after standing up, he can't figure out how to sit back down without falling down.  I love how, as soon as he catches sight of me in the morning, the biggest grin pops onto his face.  I love how, as he catches sight of Daddy coming home from work, the biggest grin pops onto his face.
I know the tendency is to talk about all the bad things about being a new parent.  But maybe parents should spend more time talking about all the good things.  I don't usually like to go the whole "what if he/she dies!" route but maybe that will add a little perspective here.  The way some parents talk makes it sound like they'd be happier if they hadn't had the child and that's really sad.  So, fellow parents, let's resolve to spend more time talking about the good things about being a parent.  The joys, the laughter, the love, the incredible blessing that we hold in our arms.       

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