Wednesday, March 16, 2011

John on: "How Things Have Changed"

This is the first of what I hope is many guest posts from the new daddy.

Things Do Change…

Everyone says it’s a game-changer. Your life will never be the same. Say goodbye to your old ways of doing things. You’re truly marching to a different, completely arrhythmic and irrational beat. On my first day back to work from paternity leave, here’s how my life has changed thus far:

  • Vocab: My use of the word “fussy” has increased about 1 billion percent. “Uh oh, is he getting fussy?” “Here comes a fussy face.” “Do you think he’s being fussy? He seems fussy to me.” I think I’ve used the word “fussy” roughly 10 times before in my entire life before February 19th. Now I might use it 10 times inside of an hour. There has to be a better word to describe the moment between infant bliss and infant eruption. I hate the word “fussy” so, so much.
  • Musical Tastes: According to my account, my new favorite tracks are “White Noise” and “Window Fan Hum” by Twin Sisters Productions.
  • Robe Use: Up 3 million percent. My parents lifted a robe from their cruise last winter and brought it to me as a gift. (The gift of petty larceny.) I have used it on occasion pre-Jack. It’s a lovely robe. Super soft. It has pockets. If I tie it right in the front, I can even be presentable enough to walk out in the front yard of our house and not just the back yard. Now, it’s my suit of armor for 3 am feedings, early morning soothing sessions, and a not-so-subtle way of telling people that my dedication to social decorum has completely dissolved. I’m a pair of ratty slippers and a cigar from Oscar Madison. Unfortunately, since both Lisa and I are “Oscars”, I have a feeling we’re going to need the services of a “Felix” pretty soon.
  • Sense of Accomplishment: It is now largely centered on my ability to console an unhappy Jack. If I can calm him down from a real chin-trembler, it feels like a game 7 home run. Failure doesn’t feel like an option. I sing to him. I do a James Brown-style two-step. If desperate enough, I would punch a classroom of 1st graders in the face if it would calm Jack down. I’m hoping it doesn’t come down to that.
  • Love of Sleep: Yes, I miss sleep. A ton. No duh. But I love it now more when Jack sleeps. Not for the reprieve from a howling infant or from his flying poo. He is just a new level of cute. Lisa is cute when she sleeps, but inevitably will snore or drool. Jack’s offenses during sleep are so much worse: farts, peeing, pooping. Yet, somehow the cute power of the slumbering infant makes it all so much…cuter. It’s really remarkable. Like some sort of natural survival defense. He would stop a lunging lion in mid-air with his sleeping cuteness. Stupid cute.
  • Ball Bouncing: Lastly, I bounce on a ball. I don’t bounce the ball. I bounce with it. It’s like the bouncing balls have won. Sad day for America.
  • Patience: It’s on an upswing. I now can say I sort of maybe have it. I don’t honk as much in the car as I once did. I’ll preemptively slow down at a light I know is about to change. If Jack doesn’t feel like cooperating at 5am, I can feel a slight adjustment where I can accept it, and try a different approach with the little jerk.

Other than that, I’m exactly the same.


  1. awwwwwwww. That's it exactly.

  2. re:Fussy. Yeah, me too. Here are a few... "finicky, particular, overparticular, fastidious, discriminating, selective, dainty; hard to please, difficult, exacting, demanding; faddish; informal persnickety, choosy, picky"

  3. I think Dan always preferred "surly" to "fussy."

  4. well, as he's a combo of me and john, "surly" could be more of a permanent state so not sure we can use that one. :-)
    i like 'hard to please' and 'difficult' though. he's certainly got that down.