My daughter has taken to calling me “Papito!”
Not “daddy” or “dad” or “pa.”
It used to just be “Pito” before she could pronounce more than two syllables. Incidentally “Pito” has a kind of crude meaning in Spanish slang, so I’m glad she eventually settled on “Papito!”
I guess it’s only fitting that my daughter would chose a name for me. I’ve reflected on various occasions on this blog how a person changes radically. I guess I didn’t realize it before, but I’m currently in the middle of a kind of transition period. True, there have been a lot of obvious changes (moving to the US, having children, starting a business), but sometimes it takes a smack in the head to see the obvious.
If you want to see just how things have changed, I suggest you dial back this blog to year one and read everything through in order. I don’t intend this to be an online diary, as much as a place to discharge whatever piques my annoyance daily, as well as display all my awesome photos of Peru. However, I suppose there is definitely a diary element.
Having kids brings new meaning to the phrase “full time job.” For example, your weekends are no longer rest days, because you still have to attend to the most important tasks of your life (taking care of your kids). Sleep schedules are thrown off, worries are magnified, and actually you get so busy that everything kind of blends together.
And it’s awesome, I have to say.
The line in “Lost in Translation” is true. Your kids are the most wonderful people you’ll ever meet. They’re essentially you, but the version you were before you had a bunch of crap thrown at you.
I don’t understand people that neglect their kids. I guess I might have lacked the proper perspective if I’d had children when I was 18 or 22. By the time I got married, I’d seen and done just about everything I’d ever dreamed of. Sure, there were times along the line when I worried about whether I’d ever have a family, but actually waiting until your in your 30s to get married is pretty standard these days.
Recently, I received a letter from my aunt about another distant cousin who had died. In the letter, my aunt made a bunch of statements about how this cousin had just begun to reconcile with her estranged children which was her “lifelong dream.” My aunt concluded that it was a happy story because the cousin made the reconciliation before she died.
I didn’t write her back, but I think that perspective is totally ridiculous.
The cousin was never there for her children her whole life? She never helped them through the tough times, never supported them, never offered them a kind word, and it’s a “happy” story because she came by for brunch two weeks before she keeled over?
The reason this sets me off is that I’ve had little to no contact with my dad for about 20 years. It’s his choice, he’s just one of those people that family isn’t all that important too. However, he likes to play the victim which is why I occasionally get letters like the one I referenced above (he’s a member of the “guilt trip” generation).
There were honestly decades that this stuff bothered me, and when you’re living with a conflict like that, it really saps your energy. Worse, you have to deal with the piddly advice of a bunch of people who know nothing of the scenario, but who are sure it must be your fault and say nonsense like “you only have one dad,” or “family is family.” But you know what the court of public opinion is like. Heck I can’t even get people on the internet to agree that it’s wrong to shove four foot square images of mutilated babies into the face of my 2 year old daughter.
My rules are simple, people have to treat you with respect or there is no reason to allow them in your life.
My other rule is to channel all of my energy forward into my daughter and let the past take care of itself. I mean…look at her! I’ve got a job to do. I’ve gotta be “Papito!”
For those of you who haven’t already, make sure you do me a favor a pick up my books Beyond Birkie Fever and The Bone Sword over at the Rhemalda Bookshop! If you happen to write a review somewhere, please let me know! Also, add Birkie and Bone Sword to your cart on Amazon.com!