My Baby is Growing Up-Ahhhhhhh!
Guess who’s turning two? 
The days have been long but the years have been short. 
She has grown from the size of two bananas to being able to chow down on an entire banana. 
Which means, I’m going bananas!  

Four things I’m grateful for on her Birthday 

Patience when I’m on the go 

If you know me well, you know I can be a very impatient person. Raising a child is like having to do everything quickly, but getting it all done very slowly. Which, at first, was quite against my nature. It’s almost as if Nanette has a mind of her own; who knew? She chooses when she is hangry, when she wants to nap, when she wants to play. At times it feels like rationality and childhood is an oxymoron in terms. This goes way beyond the school assignment where the sole mission was to keep an egg for the week without breaking it.

It’s as if one day I’m on top of the world, thinking I’m killing it as a dad and then ten minutes later I’m like “I can’t even”. 
Learning to keep cool under pressure was a huge adjustment. And don’t even bring up trying to get her to brush her teeth. We’re still working on that one. 

Gratitude for everyone on my team

Thank god for help or I would have had burnout ten times over. 

And thank god for moms! All of a sudden, I realize all that my mom had to put with when I was two years old and probably a little monster. How did you do it, mom?

Not to mention the support from my child care provider, my doula, and the people who have been supportive of my journey from day one. 

It’s not easy being a parent watching a baby growing up so fast.

Quick story: I was on a work trip in Nova Scotia with Nanette when I had to pull over on the side of the highway because I was in so much pain. I called an ambulance because I couldn’t move. They took me to Moncton where it turns out I was having a kidney stone attack. I don’t know what I would have done without friends who were nearby to look after Nanette while I recuperated. It was frightening being away from my support network and realizing the potential precarity of being the sole parent at that moment in time.

Empathy from my child.   

My child taught me this. 

When you are a parent life becomes a constant evolution. You may believe one thing one day, but then have to toss it aside the next. Nanette has taught me instant forgiveness, letting things go, and that every day is a new day. She’s so pure and forgiving and that made me ponder what the world would be like if all the adults in it could be the same. I guess that’s why we have the expression “from the mouths of babes.”

Self-love and how to cultivate it 

If I can’t take care of myself, I can’t take care of her.

I have had to become a healthier person and establish a better work-life balance. No more running around, running myself into the ground, staying up all night working. There were so many sleepless nights for the first few months; I thought I was going crazy. Nanette waking up every hour and a half, in a fit. But we made it through. I need to be my best self so I can be there for her for the long game.

What’s next? 

After all the heartaches, missed opportunities, hopes, and prayers, I finally have the little family that I dreamed about. Yes, there will be trying times ahead. I can’t even think about what it will be like when she starts dating. But we take it day-by-day, minute-by-minute and baby step by baby step.