In the past 6 years, life has changed so much for me, as well as, I have changed by maturing due to having kids. The transformation started occurring upon hearing the words, "I'm pregnant"; however, I was never prepared for happened when my first child was born. The happiness a child can bring to a couple is simply more than words can say. There is a sense of fear, nervousness, and stress with having children as well. It is my goal for my children to behave better than I have in my time; furthermore, I want to warn my children of the terrors of the world while still showing them the beauty in this world at the same time. The day my first child was born I knew this is what I am supposed to do with my life.

The transformation started after hearing my girlfriend say I'm pregnant, which made me want to straighten up a bit as quickly as possible. Our relationship was at an all-time low during the time we found out she was pregnant. Somehow this news offered us a chance to rekindle each other allowing to try to improve the relationship for the sake of our child. We may have struggled to maintain our relationship; however, the idea of having a life made from the 2 of us had assisted us in overcoming every obstacle. Despite breaking up a few times I believe our children have created a permanent bond between myself and my girlfriend. At the time, I was a breakroom lead at Kmart; in comparison, I switched my focus from sporting goods and backroom duties to infant section in order to offer the chance to see the items I could purchase for my son. The change in my personality had affected friendships as I realized many of my party friends would no longer accept me due to my focus being on the idea of being a good father rather than choosing to be part of drinking parties. This created a sense of loneliness; in contrast, this feeling would not last long. As we sat at the hospital waiting for his arrival we talked about how it would be, and who he would look more like. I can remember us both being ready to hold him. The whole 4 days or so of being at the hospital we both had tears in our eyes, but these tears were tears of joy. I went home to shower and before I could even get out of the shower my phone was ringing. I answered the phone to her panting and saying "he's on his way out get your ass back here.". I quickly dressed and rushed to get back to the hospital. When I arrived they were all there gathered for it to happen. My heart was racing as tears streamed from my eyes. My mother-in-law and I have never gotten along, but this was a very important day each one of us at a leg waiting to see our baby come out. It's beautiful and disgusting to look at all at the same times as a child is born. Now I see it only as beautiful after having my second child, but we were both there to support her and to see what would take control of our life. That day will forever stick with; furthermore, she is a grandmother to my children even if we do not see things the same. I look at my son now and feel blessed.

The joys of being a parent are simply more than words can say. Now, I have 2 amazing sons, as well as, I have gastrointestinal issues which keep my at home as the stay at home parent. Being the stay at home parent is both rewarding and frustrating due to the amount of time I spend every day with them. I love both of my boys; furthermore, I try to spend time with both of them concentrating on the things each enjoys. Sometimes, I believe I have started looking forward to new cartoons perhaps as much as they do. We watch cartoons and animated movies every day. My oldest is able to communicate through speech now, which has been a blessing and a curse as many of other parents know. We have to watch everything we say. Even as I type this my oldest is trying to distract me every step of the way. He wants to be just like me, but I want him to turn out better than I have. Almost every time I do something new he is right behind me trying to do the same exact thing. He is even pretending his Mickey Mouse chair is a computer typing on it now. The memories of the day he was born will forever be some of my happiest memories. The first time I held him he gave me the same smirk I give people; in addition, I cried thinking to myself, "This is the only important thing I will ever do in my life, is to be a dad. From now on I need to do things so much better than I have." . The boys show me exactly who I am aiming to become. The best feeling I have in my life is when I see them smile; therefore, the greatest joy in my life is the joy of being a parent.

There is a sense of fear, nervousness, and stress with having children as well. It is my goal for my children to behave better than I have in my time; furthermore, I want to warn my children of the terrors of the world while still showing them the beauty in this world at the same time. The life of being a father is filled with struggles and stress. Studies have shown people without children are considered less stressed and happier; however, I disagree the stress is worth the joy that my kids bring to me. At times I do wish I could do things like I could before having children; in contrast, most of the things I did before I was a day are things I shouldn't do. I miss hanging out with friends without the worry of "are my kids alright do I need to rush home", but I would never trade what I have to go back to that. When our soon had 2 bad seizures in 1-morning life changed for us. We realized we would have to watch him a little better from than on. I have never been as scared as when he had the seizures, and they found an arachnoid cyst. After, we drove many miles away the doctor ensured us we should not worry the cyst would not cause a problem for him. The worry of having something wrong with your child can make you realize how quickly you would trade positions if you could. I would give my life for either one of my children. As a parent, our job is simple to provide, protect, care for, and teach our children; therefore, we warn them in an attempt to keep them safe. Children do not always listen to warnings; in addition, we have to discipline them. I have found being strict will make them listen; however, being strict can make them fear you. It's my goal to be fair enough for my child to love me while I am also strict enough for them to listen to me. Perhaps the most frustrating part of being a parent is trying to find a balance between discipline and being fun. I love my dad, but we have partied together more than he has disciplined or lead me to make clear thought-out decisions. This is not to say he didn't try rather than he did his best in the way he thought was best. My step-dad was very strict to the point of which I was honestly terrified of him until I rebelled, but I know he as well did his best. Thinking he had to be strict in order for me to listen to what he said. I love both of my fathers, as well as, I learned a lot from them. They were complete opposites because one didn't discipline as the other disciplined too harshly without them I question if I would have turned out to be the man I am. My goal is to become a father in the center of their styles allowing me to be fun, loving, and respected. After, the things I have seen in my life I want to protect my children, but they need to see how amazing and terrible this world can be. My girlfriend and I will continue to do our best for the kids to grow-up to become great men. The stress and worries are worth the joy our kids bring us.

Since I became a dad I have realized without a doubt how important the role of becoming a good father is. Even as my oldest talks my back to me I realize he is mine, to say the least; furthermore, I see so much of myself in them by their actions alone. After, hearing I had a baby on the way everything I knew completely changed, but it changed into something amazing. There is nothing in the world that can replace the joy of your child smiling at you. Even with the stress and fears of being a parent, it is worth it. If ever I had to give my life for my children I would do it in a heartbeat and not think twice. This is my life as a parent; therefore, I am blessed to be able to do the job of protecting, providing, loving, and teaching my children about all the world has to offer.

The reason I did not post this after writing it was because it was written on 03 July, and the next day before getting a chance to post it my oldest hurt his eyebrow on the tv stand playing around it. It was the first time either of my kids had to get stitches. I felt horrible about it. I had only left the room 2 minutes to put his brother in the tub to prepare for 4th of July celebrations. As soon as it happened I cleaned him, and comforted him; however, even as he quit crying I was completely worried about him to the point of tears. We rushed him to the hospital, where we had to hold him down for them to numb it. It hurt hearing him in pain, and we were just as terrified as him. Together we helped calm him down to the best of our abilities; however, a nurse came into the room to calm him down. She talked to him offering him an ice cream or bunny pop (popsicle). He smiled at the words "Bunny Pop", and responded, "I want a bunny pop". It scared me, but friends and family reminded me, "They are kids they will get hurt, fall, and get back up. These things happen, and even had you been in the room he would fell playing." This did not ease my mind. As a parent, it's our job to protect and provide meaning. I kept thinking I wish I could get the stitches instead of him. I wish I could take his pain away even if I would have to feel it. This is what parenthood means to me. I stress, we struggle and try to do our best for our kids. Tonight I am helping to calm my 2-year old by watching Curious George 2 with him again. 

Image source: https://pixabay.com/en/baby-sweet-happy-human-papa-hands-203048/

Published by Brandon Allday