These are times when I feel guilty. guilty of chosing career our my life. The guilt was not much until I got a life, I had a family, I had a wife, I had a son. The guilt grew exponentially as my career picked up at the same rate. For someone who swears by his perseverence and determination to make things better at work, and feels responsible for all the problems he can spot and works his best to solve them, his personal guilt also ends up showing up like a problem which needs to be dealt with. This is just plain sad. The worse though are the strange things I end up doing to feel less guilty. Career is like any other dangerous addiction, it sweet poisions your life and body just like any other addiction, which atleast come with a warning on the package. Everyday I have this strange feeling of having to make this tough choice between being what I am at work, and being a father.
Sometimes I learn rhymes, I watch tv shows, I also listen to music which my son likes, just to make sure I am not left far behind from his world. When I am away at work, or going back late to our house, and I am feeling left out from his life, I have something to fallback to, to get a glimpse. There is also a secret hope, that in whatever little time I have with him, he doesnt think our worlds are mutually alien to each other.
Kids love their moms, and moms love their kids. There is nothing that a father can do which can count as a bigger scarifice than what a mother does without even realizing it. I wonder if there can be jealousy in parenthood. At the cost of sounding petty, I admit there is. I feel jealous at various times when I see my wife bond with my son without any effort, and at the ease with which he clings to her. As an engineer, I can write pages of reasons why this happens, and how or why I dont end up doing any of those things. There are times when your mind does not accept the nature, and just wants to compete against it. I have always believed that when someone says “its not a competion”, it is a way of covering up the loss. Parenthood is not a competition, moms and dads dont compete with each other. Why do I have a feeling that I am losing.
Parents are like mixed doubles team trying to win a championship of parenthood. Each pair have their own strategy, their good and bad plans. Some of the tactics are universal though. The idea of good cop and bad cop being one such tactic. World hates sterotypes, but how much ever we hate anything, you cannot ignore its existance. For ages fathers have been the bad cops. Kids predominantly are always told to tidy up or face consequences when daddy gets home. Many a times they look at us, and probably must see a cop with a baton. I hate being the bad cop. I would love to be the good cop, and be the one my son runs to when my wife plays bad cop. Like any good team, I guess all dads have to byte the bullet and assume of the role of bad cop. It is not easy.
I did not know I was an alpha male, until I realized I was, one day. I see that my son is turning into one day by day. It is not an easy task to deal with two alpha males in the family. I am sure my wife has already realized it.
When kids are growing up, there are many little pleasures they bring about. There is nothing better than your little discoveries when they have picked up your traits, specially the ones which you are proud of. The joy it brings is something which cannot be explained in words. I love my son’s obsession with time. He sets a time for everything that he does on a daily basis, and makes sure he sticks to it. More importantly he makes sure the other people stick to it too, and keeps hurrying up my family if they are running late. There are times when people can literally catch me smiling when this is running about. Yes, he also has opinion about everything under the earth, and he fights for his views till the end of the earth. I told you, two alphas are horrible thing for a house.
I remember few years ago when I was a new father, my wish was “I wish I could enable debugs for kids, it would have been so easy to solve their problems”. Children do not work as per our plan, in fact they hardly stick to their own plan. I guess they are not a project that parents work on, they cannot be planned and executed. It may sound dumb, but our minds have just got tuned to our professions so much that we deal with everything like we do at work.
Kids are hyperactive, and they love to keep jumping from one thing to another. When they are asleep they are the best things on this planet. The look of innocense on their faces, the unknown smiles in their sleep, how they cling to our bodies, and how they scoop into our chests. One of the best moments of my day, is when I curl up next to my son in the morning when he is still in bed. There is nothing worse then when they wake up and tear themselves away from you. < pun intended >
Bad fathers have too many expectations from their kids. All fathers have expectations from kids. I am not able to choose one.