Today is my first (and, at the moment, only) daughter’s 1st birthday. A bittersweet opportunity to reflect on the year that was, I wanted to share some of things that I learned in this first year of fatherhood:
- The most basic means of human communication is the cry; everything we say in our language are just cries, masked.
- Until I had a child, I thought that love was a finite resource; turns out, you can love multiple people “all the way.”
- I now know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we are not born “blank slates,” but rather come into this world with innate personalities, character traits, and predispositions. A child comes into the world this extraordinary little package and offers herself as a gift to her parents. The parents’ job – harder than it sounds – is to accept the gift.
- It is extraordinarily hard as a parent not to become your parents, though that is not always a bad thing.
- Similarly, it is really hard (maybe impossible) to be cool and a parent at the same time.
- Babies are surprisingly resilient.
- The female body is truly miraculous.
- Mothers are the closest we have on earth to honest-to-goodness superheroes.
- I can’t even begin to imagine how single parents do it.
- Our culture forces an impossible choice between parenthood and career, a fact that many mothers justly lament, but also one that more silently devastates fathers; America can do better by its parents and for its children.
- “Good enough” is preferable to perfect.
- I owe my child WAY more than she owes me.
- The time really does go by too fast, but that is precisely what makes each moment so precious.
- You don’t have to have a lot of wealth to be the richest person in the world.
- The meaning of life is to love, and the meaning of love is to give.
Parents, what did I miss? What have you learned?