When we first found out we were going to be parents it seemed like everyone kept repeating the same thing to us. “It will change your life forever.” Okay, yeah, sure it will. You dont even have a human kid. You’re a dog mom! It seemed reasonable that something like creating new life would turn ours upside down but no one ever explained how.
There were obvious changes like lack of sleep, more toys around the house, and the added expenses for diapers, etc. Additionally, changes to our lives snuck up on us throughout the first year of parenting. I don’t know how they happened and stranger than that, I don’t hate them all.
Here’s my list of top three surprise ways fatherhood has turned my life upside down:
The number of days that I can go between showers is embarrassing. But on workdays it’s just Boy Wonder and I on our own. Sometimes I can get him in the shower with me and other days, most days, I become weary and exhausted at the very thought of that wrestling match. Most days, I’m lucky if I can brush my teeth and shave while he attacks the back of my knees. I promise, I’m never so bad that you can’t sit next to me on the subway. And if you do smell something it’s probably just Boy Wonder’s diaper…no really, I swear it is!!!
Bex and I used to love going to the movies. We would go at least once a month, maybe more. I can count on one hand the number of movies we saw in theatres since he was born.
1. Justice League – Drive In Movie he slept through.
2. The Last Jedi – Grammie was in Town
3. Pitch Perfect 3 – Grandma and Grandpa visited
4. Avengers: Infinity War – Another visit from Grammie
5. The Incredibles II – Super Sitter babysat
No big complaints here. We might miss the popcorn and the reclining seats but Netflix has become our in-home movie theatre. Big shout out to our Alexa Fire Stick as well (Thanks Carrisa and Jeff!). We barely ever notice that we don’t go out as much anymore.
We have noticed all the baby friendly hobbies we’ve picked up though. You should see the number of books I read this year (72). I know it’s made an impression on Boy Wonder too. One of our favorite past times is reading together in the living room.
Bex, if you’re reading this please don’t call me a liar. I may be impatient about some things (traffic, crowds, customer service) but this little sidekick has mellowed me out in so many ways.
It used to be that if I wanted something like a nap, a snack, or to read the newspaper, I just went for it. That’s my American right after all. But now I don’t always have the luxury. I put his needs first without (too much) grumbling. Besides, how can I be mad at that giggling face?
It’s funny how we used to go,go,go all the time but now I’m fine staying at the same very interesting patch of grass at the park, even if it isn’t more than five feet away from the car. As long as he’s happy, so am I.
So what if it takes us ten minutes to go down the stairs or put the toys away? Everything becomes a learning experience for Boy Wonder. Why would I rush and rob him of that?
Here’s a bonus I’ll throw in. I don’t count this one because I’m married. Marriage is compromise from the minute you forget to work “obey” into the vows. Having a kid just reinforces the idea.
I’ve learned to feed him first, then myself. Get him down for a nap and then I’ll— Actually that’s probably a good time to take a shower, or maybe read a book, I know I won’t have time for all three, unless… I can nap in the shower while listening to an audio book! Brilliant! Compromise begets creativity too!
So IncrediDads and IncrediMoms, I’d love to hear from you. What were some unexpected ways that your kid changed your life? Write them in the comments below!