Parenting 101

Check out what we found as my wife and I were getting ready to climb in bed. 


Oh, the things no one tells you when thinking about parenthood. I had my thoughts about it; wrestling on the floor, throwing every conceivable type of ball, learning to ride a bike. 

But it’s this little stuff that regularly catches me off guard. A stuffed storm trooper laying in our bed, boogers on toys, clothes, walls, sheets, two boys singing opposing choruses of the Star Wars and Tron themes. 

Most of this parenting gig is awesome, and yet I still feel like I’m screwing up my boys either because I just flat made a fool of myself, I’m too selfish to engage or in or I’m preoccupied with some nonsense that really, in the grand scheme of life, doesn’t matter in the least. 

Intuitively I’m pretty sure I know the stuff I can do better, but this damn ego of mine puts up road blocks left and right. As of late, I think that’s why I’m gravitating to the Richard Rohrs, Thich Nhat Hahns and John Philip Newells of the world. There is a peace and silence they advocate that is not simply turning things off or getting away (solitude), but entering into a different realm that we might become people who not only think differently, but we also act and interact more holistically with our families, friends, humanity and all things living, created and evolving, even this planet and our relationship to it. 

I am hoping, that as I begin to embark on this journey of purpose and intention with my wife and family, I will start to become more aware of the light in myself and those around me, taking time to relish the beauty of my kids rather than letting my ass get chapped because they sing the same song all day long or punch me in the junk for the ninth time today. 

I keep coming back to the question, what kind of person do I want to be? How will we engage in lives of peace and compassion? We’ll see. Should be an exciting journey. 

Hard Shit

Something that I’ve never been good at is conflict. I can manage mediating difficulties between other parties, but something I’m terrible at is handling things when I’ve found myself in the middle of a fight. The worst imaginable, when my wife and I fight. 

My brain functions in fix-it mode. When there is a problem, all my energy is directed to solving the hang-up. What have I done that needs to be corrected? What patterns can I build into my orderly existence that will help me avoid this again? Why is it so difficult for me observe the conflict rather than become totally caught up in it, as if it is part of me? Does one ever get better at it?

So, the worst possible scenario: fights with my wife. The one person I the world I’m least interested in having conflict with. My head understands the “practice makes perfect” mantra, but I would rather not practice with my wife. Anyone else please. 

Marriage is not always a walk in the park, I know, but isn’t it possible to avoid certain difficulties en lue (spelling?) of marital harmony? Of course that’s not to say that I’m interested in throwing in the towel, because that is most certainly not the case. I will fight with every inch of my being for my marriage, until my dying breath. Sometimes, the easy button would be very useful, especially one that actually works. 

Marriage is hard shit and I’m pretty sure no one clued me into the truth of it when I was 20 years old with raging hormones. I am however determined to make this relationship the most meaningful, solid, unshakable and authentic it can possibly be. I am also convinced that as we travel along this journey there is an unmatched joy that comes with working so hard at something. 

So I will continue on and hopefully get better at this whole adulting thing, and yes, conflict is part of the deal and I’ll work to be better at it.