Embrace The Chaos -or- My Kids Are Jerks And That’s OK!
If I had a time machine in my twenties and I used it to travel into the future to see what my life would be like today, as a father to two little girls… I might have run for the hills when I eventually got around to the time I met my wife. No, but seriously folks, fatherhood is NOT what I thought it’d be and I’m finally OK to talk about it.
As I write this, my daughters are five and seven years old. My oldest is in grade 2 and my youngest is entertaining the bejesus out of everyone in senior kindergarten. And while there are benefits to having two kids who are just over two years apart, it doesn’t make it any easier when they both fall victim to Temperatus Tantripicum, or the temper tantrum as it’s known in English. OK, that first part’s not really Latin but if I kept quiet about it would you have believed me? And do we really need the word “temper” in front of “tantrum??” Do kids ever have a happy tantrum? I can’t imagine you hear too often someone say, “Rebecca, now three years constipated, threw a happy tantrum upon learning of the benefits of fibre on WebMD.com.”
noun: tantrum; plural noun: tantrums
- an uncontrolled outburst of anger and frustration, typically in a young child.
See? We don’t need “temper” in there. Kinda redundant.
Anyhoo, for the most part our girls are pretty good to me and my wife. They’re creative, they’re compassionate, they have a vast array of interests and once you get over their Children Of The Corn demeanour, they’re actually pretty fun to hang out with. But every now and then they strike with the Hiroshima of bad moods. And when you work a 12-hour day that’s the last thing you wanna come home to.
Despite the hourly mood swings, I think I’ve learned quite well to live with two little kids who can sometimes be real big jerks. Now, before you troll the crap out of me on Twitter telling me I’m a terrible father go to the closest mirror and say whilst looking deeply into your own eyes, “I’ve never thought my children were jerks.” I bet you can’t do it without smiling. That’s right. That lip curling, Grinch of an evil smile. And that’s the reality of parenting. No matter what culture or religious background you’re a part of, you gotta admit that all children can be real jerks sometimes.
When things are at their worst and you’re up to your armpits in the chaos that is children… embrace it. No, seriously. Embrace the shit out of it! I figured out the key to a parent’s survival a couple of years ago while pushing my screaming kids in a rickety shopping cart in Walmart. The key is embrace it and get to love the batshit craziness our children often exhibit in truckloads. And you know why? Because it’s all going to go away!! And I guarantee, 100% your money back, you’re going to miss it one day. Sounds dumb, right? The evidence is in all the people posting photos of their kids graduating high school and university when seemingly last week they were posting baby or first-day-of-school photos. “Where does the time go?” they ask. And we have no answer because no one knows. Time goes by too quickly and life owes you NOTHING! Embrace the madness!!
So the next time your kids act out a scene from “Village Of The Damned” in your living room in front of your friends while you dole out the holy water while you scream, “The power of Christ compels you!!” just step back and remember there will come a day when you’ll wish for those temp… those tantrums again.