RSS

Scary

17 Feb

At some point it hits you. Fuck. This is actually real. This is actually happening. I’m going to be responsible for an entire living breathing human baby. Fuck. What? We’re having a child. We really are.

Even if you’ve spent years trying and wishing and hoping, the fact that it’s happening is still a surprise. You think, no, maybe it’s all going to go wrong. Maybe it’s only slightly true. Maybe it won’t last. So you don’t contemplate it at first. You’re waiting for something to change. Except it doesn’t change. You’re still going to be a parent.

I don’t know if it matters what age you are. I’m heading for 40 in a month or so. But I don’t think it’d matter if I were 18 or 25 or any age. You’re. Never. Ready. Bang! You’re a parent. A parent. A father. A dad. Fuck. Really? The months are counting down. Four flew by, five to go. Locked and loaded. Get ready or go home.

I don’t want to write this next bit, but I will: I think I’ve changed already. I don’t want to admit that because it removes a couple of jenga blocks from the cosy certainties I’d grown throughout my adult life, namely parents aren’t that special and epiphanies aren’t real. But maybe I was wrong all along. Because I cannot help but feel like I’m changing. And that change can only lead me towards asking a kind of epiphanous question: is this what I was always meant to be? Is this the most important thing I’ll ever do? Is this – oh god, here it comes – my destiny?

Well, I’m not sure about that last part. It’s pretty far from your destiny to be a parent if your baby-making equipment is damaged right out of the box and you rely on advances in science unthinkable a couple of generations ago – and a lot of money – to give yourself a forty-five percent chance of succeeding. And if you’d asked me when I was 20, or 25, whether I thought I’d ever be wanting a baby at all, let alone desperately trying to have one, I’d have said no in pretty unequivocal terms.

But now, here we are. You do change and that change can be for the better. Or if not better just different. You change. The things you want and need and care about change.

Fuck, a baby? Me?

One nice thing about being a bit older – or maybe having been through some of those changes – is that you’re not careful to conceal your terror. It’s terrifying. It’s scary and brilliant and amazing and one great big horror show all at once. It’s everything you want and everything you worry about. It’s knowing you can’t ever be just you ever again, but realising you’re glad about that.

Fucking hell though, me a father? Really?

Again, you get older, you see yourself fail at a lot of things you thought you’d coast through; you watch yourself be surprisingly good at things that other people find impossible. You realise you have capabilities and strengths. You learn what you can and can’t do. You realise there are more cans than can’ts. You feel ready.

Ready. Ready at last. It won’t be easy. That much I do know. But I feel a strange warmth. From everyone I speak to. You can do it, they seem to be saying, you deserve it, they say without saying it. People I hardly know wish me well, and I know they mean it; people I’ve known for years wish me well, and I know they mean it to.

Nothing else will ever be the same. Good. Bring it on, baby. I’m ready for you. 

Advertisements
 
1 Comment

Posted by on February 17, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

One response to “Scary

  1. Justin

    February 17, 2015 at 8:50 pm

    Ringing huge bells for me and mine are 14 and 10.

    On this…

    I don’t want to admit that because it removes a couple of jenga blocks from the cosy certainties I’d grown throughout my adult life, namely parents aren’t that special and epiphanies aren’t real.

    But you will (I’m pretty sure) feel special when the baby comes along and there are epiphanies large and small every day. You know what? I think those epiphanies are fucking amazing. Let yourself feel and see them if you want. Enjoy yourself. Fuck everybody else and what they think. We’ve all said “babies aren’t special” at some point but mine are to me and yours will be to you.

    And…

    And that change can only lead me towards asking a kind of epiphanous question: is this what I was always meant to be? Is this the most important thing I’ll ever do? Is this – oh god, here it comes – my destiny?

    When I was in my 20s and didn’t want kids I thought the worst thing that could happen to me was I’d become my Dad who slogged his guts out all his life for his family and nothing but. The older I get, and the more I see it all from my Dad’s end, the more I realise there are far, far worse things I could have become. I ended up understanding my Dad much more and our relationship got richer for it. Turns out my Dad was and is pretty great and if my girls have similar thoughts about me in the years to come then won’t that be something?

     

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: