Happiness as a Parent (JMFG Style)

Since my last post was a little bit of dark humor, I thought I would sprinkle in some positivity 4 dat ass. I’m a happy person these days. Without going too much into it, I spent much of my early years not being so. I had some good times in there but as far as being at peace with myself and in a pattern of existence to sustain happiness–I really hadn’t found it.

Somewhere after the haze of college I found that happiness is a process rather than a feeling, and the cornerstone is work (at least for me). Happiness as an individual made it so I could have happiness as a boyfriend, co-worker, husband, and now as a father. I used to think happiness could be found most easily in relaxation and an avoidance of responsibility. But I learned that I’m not like that.

So, I was one of the first of my friends to take the plunge into marriage, and for a while I felt my friends watch me like a gorilla at the zoo to see how that played out…Hoping it would work out, but fully expecting it to fail. (It’s ok if you thought that, there was plenty of reason to bet that my 24 year old self would f**k it up.) But I didn’t and people have asked–what’s the secret to a happy marriage? And I give the same advice every time:

“Do everything she says, but once a month say some version of ‘watch your tone’, whether the tone is there or not. Then go back to doing everything she says.” Real Talk. My next piece of advice will likely be don’t put stuff like that on the blog that she can read, because now it’ll be meta and she’ll know your tricks…I’ll have to come up with something new. But now with kids…it doesn’t matter because we’re still figuring out new patterns for sustained happiness, as the little tax-shelters are a game-changer.

And with the Kid thing…I see people watching me in the same fashion. After our first boy, I got a lot of questions about parenthood and now with 2–SH*T GOT REAL. Parenthood is the strangest thing because everything you describe about your life is basically how it got terrible. The Geneva convention considers sleep deprivation torture and therefore a war crime, but that little a-hole you created will sound-off like a siren for 4 months. When you get invited to things you can’t go, or hell, you just stop getting invited to things because people don’t want kids there. Restaurants become potential nightmare scenes. There’s the dirty diapers, the tantrums, the broken stuff, the cleaning, and the money. Oh the money. $1300 per month in daycare for two if you’re wondering.

But All parents, except this broad…
Casey Anthony
will always tell you “it’s hard but it’s worth it.”

Which is a cliché, because it doesn’t really capture it. So, here’s my attempt to explain it. I now have to feel guilty when I sleep (nap or just getting your typical 7-8 hours). Because if I’m sleeping I am legitimately screwing over my wife or family somehow. Sometimes if I’m dropping the Cosby kids off at the pool and I take too long, I know I have to hop off and do doubletime, because that’s precious husband/daddy time. I am always tired, and sitting and writing this is my free time activity…for the week.
BUT…

when I get sleep, I’m fulfilled. When I get free time, I smile. And when I get a night out, all I can do is think about these guys…

boys

So yeah, I was indifferent about having kids. My wife wanted them, so I told her “OK fine, but watch your tone girl. Don’t talk to me like that.”

But now, any time a day gets rough, all I have to do is look at my phone and play the video below:

PS So yes, I am basically saying that no matter what situation you are currently in you need to go out and get all pregnant with someone…pretty much no matter who they are.

PPS That’s a joke.

PPPS I won’t do too much of the family talk because my wife does it so well here. So click this link, if that’s what you’re into.

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