By: Danny Thomas
I have a four-year-old kid, and an 18-month-old kid…
They are awesome, but they are the worst roommates I’ve ever had.
They are so full of life that it spills out on the floor and I am constantly tripping over it.
They are so expressive that I forget I have my own feelings, until they come bubbling, frothing, erupting and exploding, at times, to the surface.
They are brilliant, astounding, wonderful machines of love and destruction.
Fatherhood is a synthesis of so many things including chaos, laughter, entropy, love, awkwardness and destruction…
The other day I went to my acupuncturist. She treats me for a number of things including indigestion, stress and anger-management – obviously, all these things are related to, and amplified by parenthood, but they were “pre-existing conditions.”
There is always a bit of awkwardness on my part when she works on my feet.
Like clockwork, she starts to take my socks off. I offer to do it, and she laughs and tells me it’s not a problem, so I relax. This particular day, she kept laughing… a little too long.
“I think you have a sticker stuck to your foot… it looks like Tinkerbell.”
I was just so relieved it wasn’t food.
The thing is, at that moment all I could do was laugh, at myself, at my children, at the whole episode – and isn’t that one of the greatest gifts?
I am learning from Lil’ Chaos and Wobzilla (their loving nicknames) all the time, and growing as a result of them being in my life. I am learning to be more patient.
I am learning to be disciplined when it’s called for and spontaneous when it’s not. It’s not always easy to tell the difference.
I’m learning, er… trying to learn to accept that this whole family, this life, is a work in progress.
Learning that mistakes and embarrassing moments are okay, that I can laugh at myself even when I have weird crap stuck to my feet, or even when I make a more serious mistake.
If I can learn that from my kids then hopefully they can learn it from me too…
And I guess I feel like the biggest thing I have to teach my children
Is that I have something to learn from them…
that we have a lot to learn from each other.