There is so much that I love about being a dad. But I do not think that every moment of every day is a joyful one when you become a parent.
In fact there are a number of things in my life that I enjoy less since I became a dad. I thought I would share some of those with you today;
1. 12 am– Staying up late used to be a fact of life for me. I have always been more of a ‘night owl’ than a ‘morning lark’. My children on the other hand do not know the meaning of the words ‘sleeping in’. 7 am is the best we do 90% of the time. Even when Meghan and I tried to rotate Saturdays to sleep in I rarely fell back asleep after the kids woke me up. 12am used to mean the night was just getting started, now all being up at 12am means is I am very tired the next day.
2. Eating Out– I used to go out after church for lunch almost every week. As a single guy this weekly trip cost me between $6 and $13. Adding a wife to the mix meant our weekly outing jumped to $12 to $25. Now with three children ordering their own meals we can easily sink $60 into one non fast food meal. Of course money isn’t only issue. I won’t lie, I didn’t like eating around noisy toddlers when I was single. Now that I am a dad of three I HATE subjecting others to the noise we make.
3. Going To The Bathroom- I can’t say I ever enjoyed using the bathroom before. Maybe it is better to say before I had kids I took peaceful moments in the bathroom for granted. Now, no matter how occupied my children are before I head into the bathroom, I can almost guarantee when that door closes either; a) a fight breaks out b) someone starts pounding on the door or c) those little fingers creep underneath the bathroom door followed by the elongated ‘daaaaaddyyyyy‘ . That last one always freaks me out, It reminds me of something you would see in a horror movie.
4. The Quiet- I used to LOVE having a few unexpected quiet hours in the afternoon or evening. And I still do if quiet means Meghan and the kids have gone out somewhere and I am on my own. But that doesn’t happen very often. The quiet I mean is when my kids suddenly stop making noise. This tends to happen after I see they are playing well together and are seemingly fully occupied so take the opportunity to wash some dishes, clean up the kitchen , or start to make dinner. Than as I am working on my task I realise it is quiet, too quiet. For everyone who has or had preschoolers and toddlers you know they rarely play quietly. But boy oh boy can they do mischief quiet. I hate it when the kids are out of eyesight and they get mysteriously quiet.
Since I became a dad I have given up a few small joys to gain many much larger ones. Having someone knock on the bathroom door is a small price to pay for all the joy and laughter we have shared so far. Never the less even amongst the laughter l enjoy some activities a lot less now. What about you, what are somethings you find you enjoy less now as a parent compared to being a single person or a couple?
Christopher Drew is the pastor at Sackville Baptist Church. He is the father for three and the husband of one. He is a self professed geek and gamer. Read more about family, faith, and geekery at http://ModernManOfTheCloth.com