Even after over four months, it’s still difficult to wrap my head around. The fact that I’ve created a tiny human being and now have to guide her through this life, make sure she has everything she ever needs, and place her in the best position to flourish – mentally, spiritually, physically, in every possible way. At times, it seems unconquerable.
I often think back on all of those articles we read, all of those classes we attended, and all of those questions we asked while Mackenzie was still brewing. All silliness. Not a single thing in this world can prepare you for becoming a parent for the first time. Nothing.
When you have a child, you lose a part of yourself. Video games now mean absolutely nothing to me. A weekend is just a two-day period when I don’t have to be equally engrossed in my career. Any romantic endeavors need to take place before we pass out at 9 or before the kid wakes up at 5 (and forget foreplay if she’s teething). The concept of ‘myself’ is no longer relevant, and while I welcome such a reality with open arms, I now see why there are so many terrible parents in the world. Having a child needs to be an act of pure selflessness.
And that form of selflessness is far different than the kind implied within a marriage. In a marriage, you compromise (in a good marriage, anyway). In parenthood, you sacrifice – pure and simple.
The obvious punchline here is that you could lose different parts of yourself fifteen times over, and one smile from your child makes you feel like a complete moron for even feeling like you ever lost anything at all. I’m cut into ribbons with every laugh and milestone. She keeps me speechless.
So, I carry on with my newest gig. Attempting (failing) to curse less. Appreciating the smallest and simplest of things. Learning to ignore sleep. Preparing to intimidate her first boyfriend. Embracing the little moments that I never want to end. Loving the whole damn thing.