Bittersweet Parenthood

Before I forget, happy new year…

I have now been a parent for almost 8 years now… and it surely has been anything BUT boring!

I wanted to, however, share some key learned lessons in becoming a parent. Most will tell you to 1) sleep as much as you can before you become a parent and 2) your life as single independent will be over. Those two are very true. However, that is not all.

Once my kids were out of baby stage, my life was bit more… relaxing. They began to sleep at more normal hours (except my daughter who just can’t go to sleep before 9 pm anymore!) and they are able to do some minimal things on their own (eg. tooth brushing etc and dressing themselves etc.). However, with that comes their own state of mind. It may not seem such a big deal at first but lately, I have noticed few things about my kids.

My daughter has become super-sensitive to others and will apologize at the smallest of things. My son has been causing more and more ruckus lately. Oh scratch the second one. That’s just being a boy. 😛 But seriously, both have started to ask questions. An they are never-ending! I give them credit for wanting to learn… but now I understand why you can’t teach your own kids!! >.< Along with these, they have been developing their own preferences and a sense of who they are in the ways of what they like and don't like. My daughter goes through daily morning war in choosing what to wear to school. My son only likes to things just the way HE likes them. And I as a parent, am finding myself trying to come up with new ways to teach them how to be human. Yes, it's important that they develop sense of who they are but it's a balance that they need to practice. If it's 30 F outside, shorts are not practical. And with the latest craze of Bakugans, we've come to conclusion that my kids are not ready for the animated TV series as the shows seem to make them behave more... violently. With this came realization that I no longer live for myself. For next 12 years, my life's schedule will have to adapt to theirs, and spend more time in familiarizing with their environments and friends (no problem with watching cartoons!). Addressing some key questions/issues like when can we get them started on video games? How do we limit on their friends? I get my mind blown away at these things that I have to deal with as a parent, but it's all bittersweet. Sure it's complicated. Sure I don't have as much "free" time. Sure I get more and more tired, both mentally and physically. But each time I see their smiles, and each time I see them enjoying life, it seems to be all worth it. So what if it gives me headache thinking about how grumpy they get when we tell them to get ready for bed? The ending punch line is that my life is no longer just my own. I am responsible for 3 more people now. It's not just me who needs joy and happiness, but my wife and my kids as well. And you know what?! I am ok with that.

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