Last week, I celebrated my 37th birthday. As part of that, I thought it would be fun to write about 37 “somethings.” I was going to write about what I was grateful for in my life but decided that would be too sappy. I thought it would be more appropriate to share some things I appreciate about being a dad. There should definitely be more than 37 things on this list but here’s a start:
1) Parenting is a vicious circle. When I’m with my kids, I long for my alone time. Yet, when I’m away from them, I miss them tremendously.
2) I will never be on time anywhere ever again. I used to be ten minutes early to everything. Not any more. Now I’m that guy that’s always running behind. Good luck getting three kids (and a wife) anywhere on time!
3) I won’t have a decent car for the next 15 years. It’s okay though. As soon the kids are out of the house, Daddy is getting a Corvette!
4) My oldest son might be the most sarcastic person I know. Okay, he’s the second most sarcastic person I know (after me). Sure, I want to smack him sometimes but there are other times when I stop and think “that was actually a good one.” He’s getting me back for all the sarcastic things I ever said to my parents.
5) There will be many situations where I won’t know what to do. Unfortunately, parenting doesn’t come with an instruction book. We have to do what we think is best and move forward. Sometimes we’ll be right and other times we’ll be wrong. It’s all part of the fun.
6) Being a dad is a blessing and an honor. I don’t take it for granted at all. I know there are many men out there that want their own kids but can’t have them (or don’t have them yet). I am thankful.
7) Seeing my kids disappointed about something is 100 times worse than any disappointment I’ve ever felt. I wrote about dealing with my oldest son’s disappointment about a situation earlier this year.
8) The pride I feel when one of my kids achieves something is much better than how I felt for anything I’ve achieved.
9) My kids reserve the right to jump on me, climb on me or even punch me at any given time. I’m like their own personal jungle gym and punching bag rolled into one. All I can do is brace for impact.
10) Being a dad is the hardest thing I’ve ever done or will ever do.
11) There’s no such thing as personal space with kids. I’m okay with it though. I know there will come a time where they won’t want to sit on my lap or hold my hand.
12) Every year, my oldest son shows more and more interest in the NFL. I’m keeping the faith that he’s going to grow up a Minnesota Vikings fan.
13) He is also showing an interest in fantasy football (one of my favorite things). Last year, he drafted four or five teams. He didn’t stick with them but it was a start. This year, he wants us to co-own a team together. We’ll see how that goes.
14) Vacations with young kids are not relaxing.
15) My daughter’s legs never seem to work when it’s time to walk up to bed. “Carrrrrrry me, Daddy.”
16) My kids are going to know how to use computers and technology better than me. My oldest already knows how to type properly (using the home keys) and my other son figured out how to play Minecraft on our computer by himself. Just watching him play Minecraft on his tablet blows my mind.
17) I’m the biggest kid in my family.
18) My family eats at McDonald’s and Chick-Fil-A way too much.
19) I know way too much about kids’ TV shows. I will admit that it’s getting a lot better now that the kids are getting older. Most of the shows on Disney Channel aren’t that bad. My personal favorite is Phineas & Ferb.
20) Almost nothing grosses me out anymore. I’ve had to clean up some pretty nasty messes over the past 10+ years. Boys are pukers and they don’t always chew up their food. Let’s just leave it at that.
21) The zone defense works (two parents to three kids). My wife and I have been running it for five years.
22) Our Directv DVR and Netflix have been overtaken by the kids. I’m tired of Netflix recommending that I watch Barbie movies or anything with a princess in it. Don’t get me started on my tablet. Over half of all the apps installed are games my baby girl installed.
23) My kids give me a reason to visit the toy aisle. Actually, I don’t even need them to be with me.
24) My presents at Christmas have decreased proportionally as my kids’ presents have increased.
25) I appreciate the sacrifices that my mom (and step-dad) made for me. Each year that I’m a parent, I realize more and more what they did for me and my brother.
26) Everything is funnier when it’s someone else’s kid.
27) My kids enjoy video games almost as much as I do. It’s only a problem when we all want to play at the same time.
28) My two little ones still want to hold my hand or sit in my lap. I realize I won’t have it for too much longer.
29) Being a dad is a blast. It’s true what they say about time flying when you’re having fun.
30) My kids are close to both sets of their grandparents (and their great grandmother).
31) I talk about my kids way too much.
32) My life isn’t all about me anymore. Sure, I have my selfish moments but they are fewer and further between.
33) My kids are reaching an age range (elementary school) that I remember clearly. It’s fun for me to reminisce about when I was a kid and share those experiences with them.
34) My priorities have changed dramatically over the past 10 years. I just don’t care about the things that I used to.
35) I can’t always do what I want when I want.
36) My kids can sometimes teach me more than I can teach them.
37) I can play H.O.R.S.E with my 10-year-0ld and have a good time doing it.
Like I said above, the list should be a lot longer than 37. I could have easily talked about LEGO, my daughter painting my toenails different colors or how one of the kids always seem to end up in my bed.
I look forward to seeing the list grow each year.