Random Things I’ve Learned Along The Way: Part Two

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When a toddler tells you no, it means no. When you tell a toddler no, it means challenge accepted.

Bribery, used wisely, is an acceptable tactic in parenting.

Running around the house naked is okay for a toddler. However, for an adult, it’s frowned upon.

I’m not quite sure why baby poop hasn’t been investigated as a form of biological warfare.

There’s gotta be a way to harvest the energy emitted by a child. I think my kid would power New York City for a week by himself.

Speaking of energy, now I understand why our parents needed to take a break so often. I bend over to tie my shoes and I need a nap.

If they’re fussy eaters, just leave it in front of them. They will eventually eat it. Or throw it in a fit of rage.

Pillow forts are just as cool today as they were 20 years ago.

After giving Mason a bath, I sometimes find that I’m toweling myself off more than him.

Cat treats are for cats only. Or so I thought.

When your child wants to express their displeasure with you, you will know it. So will everyone within a ten mile radius.

When you offer to share your food with your child, they will refuse until it’s all gone, at which point it becomes your fault that they didn’t get any.

Another use for duct tape: Keeping your kid’s plate food-side-up.

Clipping a toddler’s fingernails and toenails should qualify as minor surgery.

Thank God for the DVR. I don’t even need to explain.

Puke – it was easy when it was just formula. Now? Can’t do it. Nope. Not happening.

Remember those rules and the “we’re DEFINITELY not doing that!s” that you put in place before having a child? Yeah, about that…

Mason produces more gas on a daily basis than the Marcellus shale has over the course of a million years.

I think it’s time for us to get Mason a helmet. No, not for a bike. For walking around the house.

The vacuum is apparently a fascinating thing. Mason loves it. I don’t get it. He cries when we’re done. I cry when I have to start.

Until next time….

Defined by Dad

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Part of life’s progression is finding an identity for yourself – finding out who you are and what defines you. You try to develop ways to narrow down what seems to be an endless list of things that interest you, careers you may like, and hobbies you enjoy all in an effort to finally say, “that’s what defines me.” For some of us, myself included, it can be a struggle to reach that point.

Then, on June 7, 2011, at 8:39 in the morning, from the floor of the operating room where I lay from nearly passing out, crackers and orange juice in hand, surrounded by more nurses than my wife who had a gaping hole in her stomach, my struggles were over, hobbies and careers no longer played a part in my soul-searching, and my list was finally narrowed down to one thing. In that instant, whatever purpose I had convinced myself defined my existence went out that second story window and was replaced by Mason.

I’m defined by kissing boo-boos (real and fake), playing peek-a-boo, a shirt over my nose when I change diapers as if it’s some kind of radioactive waste, and saying “no-no” about a million times a day. I’m defined by a house with toys strewn from one end to the other, more food on me and the floor than in Mason’s stomach, and reading books over, and over, and over again. I’m defined by sharing ice cream, cookies, cereal, and whatever other junk food I have (within reason), partaking in discussions about Bubble Guppies (what’s up with Nonny never smiling or expressing emotion?), and wiping snots when he’s sick. I’m defined by the memories of the past 19 months of his life and the hopes and desires I have for the future. I’m defined by the responsibility I have to him to be whatever he needs me to be and to love and protect him until I take my last breath.

I’m defined by Dad.

It’s a limitless definition, one that I can control and make up as I go along, and whose evolution and change parallels Mason’s. It’s something in which I take great pride, and there is no better way to be defined than that.