I tried out reading a bunch of dad books before Emmy was born and I tell you what, while they were pretty entertaining, there have just been some things to happen that those books didn’t prepare me for.
I’m going to give you guys a short list of the various things that reading those books written by dads about dad-ing doesn’t prepare you for. Come to think of it there are more than just a few… but we must start small. Here we go.
First off, the emotions that I felt the day Emmy was born and the emotions that I feel every day, whether it be pride, happiness, or just total love for the tiny baby, were briefly glanced over in some of the dad books. But the love that you actually feel when you meet your baby for the first time or the feeling you get when your kid is doing things and learning things for the first time weren’t really talked much about in those books. I think it’s because some of these things are indescribable and I couldn’t even put those experiences into words. Meeting Emmy was like a grenade filled with love and attachment went off literally inside my entire body. That’s a weak attempt at explanation. Watching Emmy learn is like watching something you’ve put a lot of work into really pay off, over and over.
This post is your basic, every parents post about their kids because I think about this a lot. So here we go.
Every parent thinks that their kid is “the shit” or the cutest or the smartest, but what happens when your kid truly is totally beautiful or actually the most awesome or is the smartest of all the babies that you know? Is it wrong to believe that about your own kid because you’re totally biased? Do you tell that kid that they’re the smartest or the prettiest and build up some weird expectation for them where it messes with their entire lives and self-esteem someday? What do you/we do with those kids?
I wonder this only because of my own (more than likely biased) views of Emerson. I truly do think she’s the cutest, most beautiful baby I’ve ever seen, as does Kayleigh, but is she really? Are we seeing her as more adorable than she is because we’re her parents? I’m sure because every parent thinks their baby is the cutest.
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Today I’m going to talk a little about those times when you’re super frustrated as a parent, the times where you just want to rip your hair out. I’m talking about the times where you have irrational thoughts like, “Why did I choose to have a kid?” or, “I wish I could put this little monster back.” These times usually come at night, either when you’re trying to get the little demon down to sleep or in the actual middle of the night when they wake up needing something from you. At times they come during the day though, too. Nap times can be just as challenging as bedtime.
I, myself, have had many of these moments and I have thought some things that I’m not proud of, but I have also learned—and it’s taken a lot of time to do so—how to calm myself down and how to actually try and enjoy those moments. If you remember that it is, in fact, your baby that you’re dealing with, it makes things a little bit easier. I then try to breathe slowly and remember the undeniable fact that I’m not going to have those moments forever. Not only will Emmy’s sleeping get better—and worse, at times—in the future, but one day she will leave the safety of my house and I won’t know where she’s sleeping or if there’s anyone there to take care of her.
I know that many of you aren’t going to care much about this, but not too long ago my twenty-seventh birthday came rolling by, and guess what? Well, it was the first time that we (Kayleigh and I) got to spend any time without Emmy in months! Well, I guess I get to go to work and school, but it’s the first time she’s really been without either of us for more than, like, an hour in the recent past. Not that I have anything against spending time with her or anything.
Any of you who are parents will understand how big a deal it is to get a night away from your children, and I gotta tell you, we enjoyed it.
The last time we got a night together, just us, was in September. We had just moved to Vegas and had gone down to Arizona to see my mom, and while we were there we went out to see IT. That was like four-and-a-half or five months ago! So it was time, well-deserved even, and we took advantage of the one chance we had to spend some real, quality time together.
After I got home from work, we all hung out and spent a while playing as a family, and tried to cram in all the time we could get together before we had to leave our little girl behind. When you never spend really any amount of time away from your kids, it can be hard to do so, even when it’s for less than a handful of hours! Such is the case for Kayleigh at least! She has the hardest time leaving Emmy anywhere, with anyone; it’s kinda cute. Anyways, we played and played with Emmy, gave her snacks, and basically just made sure she wasn’t going to think that we had abandoned her, or didn’t love her anymore, or something. Kids are weird, and think all kinds of weird things for all kinds of reasons, okay?
Have any of you ever had a ferret? You know, those long tube-like, semi-crazy little mustelids (not rodents, I checked. Google it!) that scurry around and have no chill? The ones that steal all of your stuff and have ALL the energy and sometimes bite you if they feel like it?
Well, I hate to have to inform you all, but Emmy has become a ferret.
Recently—like sometime in the last couple of weeks—she’s decided that one of the greatest things in the world is taking other peoples things and putting them in places that they would never think to look.
The other day Kayleigh and I were making dinner and Emerson was running around, doing what she does—being a nutcase and attacking the animals—what else? She then proceeded to grab Kayleigh’s stepdad’s flip-flops and made her way into the kitchen where we were slaving over the counter and stove, working hard to get food ready for her. She walked over to the oven, opened the drawer underneath, threw the flip-flops in, and walked away.
It sure is a beautiful day to watch a bunch of dudes wearing tights try to wrastle each other to the ground, ain’t it?
Well, Emmy was up early today, like 6 am-ish and now here we are. Typically she sleeps until at least 6:30, and this lack of the extra half hour is definitely felt anddd probably contributes to why I feel the urge to post this unnecessary little blog post. I awoke to Kayleigh and the amazing little lady lying next to me, Kayleigh half-asleep, Emmy with diaper leaking… all over her mama. So, Kayleigh got up and grabbed a diaper, I stayed in the bed with Emmy, and she, herself just stared at me trying to figure out what in the hell we were up to. The diaper was switched out and the attempt at cuddling went on. It didn’t really last, though.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention, please.
Let me begin by telling you that babies aren’t always easy—as if that’s not something you’ve been told forever—and I’m here to let you know about something that rips out my heart, much like Lloyd Christmas does to the chef in Dumb and Dumber.
Emmy was born active and stubborn, strong-willed and, to put it lightly, strong in the physical sense, too. She’s been go, go, go and always on the move from the second she wakes up until the moment she goes down every night. She doesn’t quit is what I’m getting at; she’s constantly in motion—doing, exploring, learning. While this all may sound great, fine-and-dandy even, there are days when all I want to do is rip my fuckin’ hair out!