I used to date this super sexy girl who like most super sexy girls, was crazy. She had a few wild ideas but the one that will always stick with me is that she wanted 5 kids. After only a few weeks of dating she revealed to me that she had dreams of a big house with a white picket fence that she could fill up with what amounts to a litter. Needless to say, I ran for the hills.
My son is awesome, but he’s kicking my ass. I may be winning our daily battle of wills but these new grey hairs tell the real story. Sometimes I wake up in a cold sweat fearing the day MM presents to me another urine soaked tube with a pink plus sign on the end of it. Most of my friends and family have multiple kids. Some seem to be trying to build a small army. They just can’t help themselves. They all seem happy but at the same time I can’t help but remember what this one guy at the gym told me about a year ago,
“Me? I have two. Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you need to have two.”
Then there was this guy I worked with who had three kids. This is what he had to say,
“Two is tough, really tough. But three? That’s just stupid. You’re always outnumbered. You better hope your oldest kid is old enough to make his own sandwich.”
The horrors of having multiple children were on display this past week at the park. A place that has become a free parenting workshop every time we’re there. On this particular trip the lesson began immediately. As soon as we arrived I saw one of the other guys I often talk to, I call him Specs. We, midday Dads, always gravitate to each other out of solidarity and fear. Fear that if we don’t huddle together in the corner we’ll get trapped talking to the other Moms about nutrition and poop. As oppose to what we want to talk about, sports and poop. I quickly walked over to Specs and Donny ran over to his son, Ry. I hadn’t seen Specs in quite a while because of what was tightly strapped to his chest: a beautiful 6-month old baby boy. Before the word “congratulations” could fully get out of my mouth Donny began to cry. He and Ry who usually got along handsomely seemed to be in some sort of conflict. Ry always brought his three big dump trucks to play with in the sand and had always shared them with Donny, but not today. In fact when Donny picked one up Ry quickly snatched it out of his hand and ran away to hide it. Donny was confused and upset. Specs half-called after his son while also telling Donny it was ok and that he could play with the other trucks. Donny picked up the second dump truck. Ry immediately returned with a scowl and snatched the second truck out of Donny’s hand. Specs again chastised his son who simply ignored him and hid the second toy. Specs apologized to me while telling Donny he could play with the last dump truck remaining. I could feel a bit of embarrassment in Specs’ voice. I assured him it was ok. I’m learning that sharing might be more of a learned trait than an instinctive one. Donny picked up the third truck and I’m sure you can figure out what happened next. As Donny sat there feeling empty and alone I retrieved his monster trucks from my backpack and gave them to him. He was disappointed but he took his monster trucks anyway. As did Ry. Right out of Donny’s hand. Specs had enough. He raised his voice at Ry and demanded he stop and give Donny his trucks back. Ry responded by running away with Donny’s toys as fast as his 2-year-old legs would take him. Specs apologized and slowly pursued his once sweet and friendly son while trying to avoid waking the infant strapped just below his chin. To be honest he looked kind of silly. A grown man trying to quietly speed walk after a screaming child with another baby hanging off him like a exopregnancy. I saw him battle with Ry at the other end of the park while Donny not so quietly sobbed in the sand beside me. Luckily, I had more trucks. I’m a veteran Dad now and I’m prepared for everything. However, park peace would not be found on this day. To the right of us a little girl laid with her hair buried in the sand and began making sand angels. Her mother pleaded with her to stop. To the left a young rambunctious boy was kicking sand at two other children that were playing together. One of the children immediately started screaming from the sting of sand in his eyes. When things like this happen I always like to observe the parents. Such an uncomfortable situation that I was happy not to be involved with. I realized that I was surrounded by madness. My own son in front of me still bitter despite the fact that his trucks had all been returned. Children to the left of me with faces covered in sand. Both of them screaming with one Mom refusing to look in the direction of the other Mom who looked mortified and apologetic. A child to the right of me kicking and squirming in the sand disregarding the specific request from her mother to lift her hair out of it. I started to breakout in a cold sweat, only this time I was already awake.
I learned a lot that day. Multiple children, multiple issues, multiple reasons to quit while I’m ahead. Was this enough madness to crush any silly notion of wanting a second child? YES! I’M happy. I’M content. The problem is, I’M not making the decision. You see, that super sexy crazy ex-girlfriend became my super sexy crazy wife. Before we married I was able to talk her out of 5 kids. The problem is we never agreed to only 1 either. And now I think she’s got that crazy look in her eye. It’s probably just a phase but I’ll spend the next several weeks avoiding rom-coms, chocolate, and oysters just in case. MM may want another son, Donny may want a little brother, but my sanity may need a vasectomy. Then again, my Dad had 5 kids and stepped up to the plate for 2 more. He never seemed stressed out. In fact, my Dad was always a pretty happy and content dude. So maybe MM and I can come to some sort of compromise. I’ll let her get a puppy.
- Thing I learned today – Donny is turning into a very outgoing kid and he needs a playmate. Badly. And my old dog ain’t cutting it. If it was up to him I think he would welcome another child.
- Random Thing – My Dad’s birthday is tomorrow. He passed away several years ago. I don’t remember exactly how many years ago because I don’t see the point in keeping track of things like that. I still find myself waiting for the day when I can look at my son without feeling a bit of sadness that my Father, Donny I, never got to meet his grandchild, Donny III. Happy Birthday Dad, from your son who still misses his Dad.
- Sports Thing – With 73 wins and a(soon to have) Championship, The Golden State Warriors are factual the best team in NBA history. Eat it Scottie Pippen.
Thank you very much for stopping by. This is the nineteenth Daddy Day By Day. Lately I’ve had a real pressing urge to write a blog regarding the presidential elections currently taking place. Or maybe I’ll write a blog reviewing children’s movies. It could go either way. If you have any questions, rants, feelings, anything positive, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or simply comment below. Please click on one of the two “follow my blog” links on the right. For you mobile users the links are at the bottom of the page. Talk to you soon…