Ryan Thomason

Geek Dad Report: I’m Such a Huge Sap Now

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No, not a sapling like a tree, or that sticky substance that you can never seem to get off of your fingers. But, I’m genuinely a tad bit more…emotional I guess is the word to say when it comes to my kids, or kids plight in general. Three years ago, I would have seen a story about how some kids were neglected, and said “That sucks.” and been completely unattached to it, while my wife was softly sobbing. Now, I see that type of story, and I get that locked feeling in my throat, where I just don’t have anything to say, but a genuine sadness or anger for how those kids are treated. My wife upgraded to outright bawling instead of sobbing. Having kids changes you.

It’s amazing how something as simple can have such a large impact on your outlook, even if you don’t know it. I remember the first time after we had our son, he was probably 4 months old. My wife and I had put him to sleep and were watching some documentary about Russian children and the orphanages that they “live in”. This is the first time that I realized that parenthood had made a huge impact on my viewpoints without me ever really making any concerned effort to do so. All I did was have a kid, and *kirplam* parental fears/instincts/love etc. kick in, and put you into a new drivers seat. Watching that documentary, I don’t know if it was from the exhaustion of being a newly acquainted parent or sleep deprivation, but I sat there just fighting back the tears. All I could image was how horrible it must be for those kids, and it took nearly all of my willpower not to go into my sons room and just take him out of the crib and hold him for a while.

Becoming a parent opens up a whole new door of humanity that I’ve never known about before. I like it though, even though it has changed me somewhat. Everyone needs to learn a little compassion in this day of age. As a society, we’ve become far too individualistic and turn a blind eye to outright inhumane conditions that are right in front of us. Now, I’m not saying you need to become a parent to learn a little compassion, but doing so does jump start the whole process whether you like it or not. Parenting isn’t something to take lightly, it’s hard, requires tons of sacrifice, and is physically and emotionally draining. The payoffs for your hard work is more than worth it though. Even so if that means that you’re going to find yourself fighting back tears and sobbing when you see injustice being done to kids.

I’m 100% sure that now that I’ve added a daughter to the mix, I’m royally screwed. I know it is an overstatement and cliche, but Dads really feel the need to overprotect their little girls. Mine is only 3 months old and I find myself being way more cautious than with my son at that time. I don’t discriminate in baby babble though, she’s getting the full, you can be a space captain and have a kick ass spaceship treatment my son got.

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