World’s Greatest Dad?…World’s Biggest Heel

It was a day I hoped would never come.

I’ve prided myself on being the cool calm collected one.

A dad so cool, the sun needs a sweater when it shines on me!

The dad who flows like water, who bends in the wind, goes with the flow and smells like teenspirit. (Wait…is that a cologne? I have no idea).

The kind of dad who exists only in family sitcoms. Loves his family, does crazy and outlandish things, quick with the funny remarks, dishes out sage worldly advice and never…ever…EVER…raises his voice in anger.

The kind of dad where Zen is my friend and karma is my confidanteė…

So, what went wrong?

To put it simply…

Daddy growled at me 😦

And boy, do I feel like the World’s Biggest Heel.

What would Chuck Norris do? Or better yet, what would Bill Cosby, Mike Brady or Alex P Keaton’s Dad, do?

Here’s the scene:

Baby’s so tired, he can hardly keep his little red eyes open, BUT…won’t have a bar of sleeping. Daddy Cool tries for 40 minutes to settle him off to sleep, all in vain. Baby then has poopy nappy. DC needs to change it and D-scovers a HUGE deposit in his Access account. Baby is still not happy and squirms all over the change table like a ninja playing laser-tag and as Daddy struggles with a handful of poop up to his elbow in one hand, baby decides to…crocodile death roll in his own poop and almost Nadia Comeneci it over the edge of the change table. At which point, Daddy Cool snapped…

STOP IT!

Indy froze and stared at me like a deer in headlights. His face, red with anguish and upset, eyes on the brink of dam-busting through glistening tears. He didn’t move a muscle and I could finish cleaning him up without a fuss.

And, I felt…ashamed and terrible.

Memories of me running into the middle of an argument between my parents and yelling out, “STOP IT!”, came suddenly flowing in.

And I can only imagine how he must have felt. The one man he relies on for laughs and tickles, for story book voices, for songs in the bath and whispers in his ears, suddenly went BOOM!

I cuddled him tight and apologised profusely. He seemed to accept it, but I feel like I dug a hole in my heart. I know he forgives me, but can I forgive myself?

Hopefully…

image

 

Stand And Deliver

Brutally hard at work in my office (see: trolling through Facebook), my heart leapt to my throat when my lovely wife sent out a scream from the living room…

“Quick, to the batmobile…er, baby’s room!”

Batteries to power, turbines to speed, paternal instincts kicked into high gear! Nadia Comaneci’d it over my office chair, nabbed a cricket bat mid-flight, kicked the door open, wide-eyed and alert like Shaun of the Dead, ready to wail the willow over any would-be zombie assailant within 3 miles of my son.

Fully expecting our little bloke to be choking, something fallen on him, wrapped in a cord or going Mano-a-Mano with a giant lizard creature from the Gorn Hegemony (see: Star Trek: Kirk VS Gorn), preparing my best Charlton Heston impression…

“Get your filthy paws off him, you damn dirty ape!”

We stood in total disbelief at the sight that befell us…

There we were, eyeball to eyeball with a grinning little cherub, STANDING for the very first time in his cot. Having pulled himself up the bars on his own. His grin so wide, it pushed out two windows in his room and a look of accomplishment and satisfaction I haven’t seen since I heard we were having a boy.

Give me a heart attack next time, sheesh.

But mummy and I looked at each other and we both felt it…a disturbance in The Force. Our little baby is growing up. And like all good mystery suspense stories, it doesn’t stop there. For there is something else brewing, just under the surface. Waiting, biding its time to burst out and emerge from its little cocoon…

His first tooth.

Just below the surface, ready to pop any day now.

Oh my lord, it has begun…

20130326-122132.jpg

Working Out “Indy-Gym”

Space: the final frontier (how apparent that we’re quickly running out of it). These are the voyages of the commando crawling, Indy-prise. His 8 month mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilisations, to boldly go where no man has gone before…

Gymbaroo!!

(Not to be confused with the Boy Scout’s gigantic week long Jamboree, nor a 3 day festival of Jim Carrey and Jim Belushi films, Jimbaroo – and if there is such a thing…god help us all).

It is in fact, the biggest playmat exercise adventure experience (the size of a basketball court), that Indy has ever seen AND…a heralded saviour and answer to my prayers when wondering how many times can our little bloke circle the couch on his belly, play with the same plastic blocks day after day, figure out my tax receipts and change the oil in my car…all without getting bored?

And now that Indy’s unquenchable thirst for investigating has hit an all-time high (he’s a nosey little bugger), I feel like Roy Scheider in Jaws…

“We’re gonna need a bigger boat.”

Gymbaroo to the rescue. From the minute we walked in and was presented with the plethora of climbing, jumping, rolling and textural equipment…Indy went bananas! Like Charlie Sheen and tiger blood, there’s just no stopping him. Crawling around, singing songs, playing games, learning and having fun all at the same time (flashbacks to his conception), it’s so great to see our boy grow in confidence and tackle more challenging apparatus’ (apperati?), week after week.

And the great part for daddy is that, with all the excitement and stimulation, our little boy is plum tuckered out by the time we get home. Which means I get a few spare moments to myself during the day for important things, like figuring out just how he did change the oil in my car in the first place. And he’d better not have adjusted the seat, it took me ages to get it just right.

Syncing of You

I’ve heard that when women spend a lot of time living together that their cycles start to sync, but I never thought the same thing of men.

Until today.

My boy and I are spending so much time together that I suddenly realised, my god…

We’re on the same cycle!

We sleep, we eat…(and poop)…all on the same cycle. Put it down to routine, male bonding or effective time management, but there in lies the dilemma of needing desperately to go at the exact same time you’re changing your son’s nappy. It’s either you or me kid…one of us has to go (though, technically both of us).

So, what’s a dad to do?

Abandon the lad and leap for the latrine, possibly scarring him for life with issues of abandonment and leaving him sprawled on the change table in his own juices, like a half-stuffed turkey at Christmas?

Or grab hold of the change table and drag it with you like a scene from Platoon, dragging fallen comrades to the chopper (leave no man behind), as you back your way into the bathroom to conduct your business?

Or bite down on a block of wood with crossed legs, your body twisting like a pretzel, squinting through tears as you race to address your son’s needs, before rupturing internally or exploding like a frog in a microwave?

It used to be easier when he was younger, but now that he’s commando crawling quicker than Jeff Thompson avoiding A Current Affair cameras, I can’t just pop him on the floor and leave him unattended (there’s never a Matthew Newton available to lie on the floor with him, when you need one). And if he needs changing the same time as you’re “going”, there’s always the risk of him spreading a trail through the house that requires an urgent call to Drytron to shampoo the carpets.

So, short of matching “His” and “His” adult and child diapers, or a tandem toilet bowl built for two, I guess I have to just grin and bare it. Unless there’s a way to unsync our cycles? Anyone out there have Justin Timberlake on speed dial? I need to know how he broke up NSYNC.

20130306-232301.jpg

Creepy Crawler

Well…first it was Jesus, then it was DYNAMO (the English magician, not the washing powder).

Now…it’s my son’s turn, to…

“Walk on Water!”

Okay, if you wanna get technical (and I know that you do), he can’t actually “walk”, yet.

BUT…

He can “commando crawl”.

And better yet, he CAN do it…“ON” water.

Making him, the first person in recorded history, to EVER…

“Commando Crawl…on Water!”

(There’s never a biblical scribe when you need one).

And…if you feel the need to get technical once again (and I know that you do), then…

“La-la-la-la-la-la-laaaa…I can’t hear you…la-la-la-la-la-la-laaaa!”

Enjoy this“momentous” video 😉

Just Add Water

Found a great recipe today.

Take one 7 month old baby boy…

And just add water!

Indy’s first swimming lessons.

And boy, he takes to water like Justin Bieber takes to hair products…

“Let me at ’em, LET ME AT ‘EM!”

The way he was windmilling his little arms with excitement, he could have powered through the water like a little motor boat, or taken out 10 guys at once in a boxing title fight.

His confidence in the water is like Billy Crystal, on stage. Singing, dancing and entertaining as hell.

It’s like he used to live the first 9 months of his life in a liquid environment…(or something?)

Learning to swim invokes a gamut of experiences and emotions for both of us. From splashing around like a joyous madman, to clinging to me for dear life. Seeing his little face rippling under water as he surges toward me is an unforgettable moment, that looks somewhere between a mixture of “Wow, how cool is this liquidy stuff!” to “Don’t EVER do that again!”

But it’s a great feeling to see and feel him put his trust in you and know that no matter what, he’ll be okay. And while he’s occasionally choking on water, Daddy’s choking back emotions of pride and joy watching his little boy become a regular little Water Baby.

Indyswim

Whatchoo Talkin’ ‘Bout, Willis?

Ever had the desire to do something, “just because you can?”

This morning we woke up and the tiny voice that talks to me inside my head, was actually outside my head, and we both did a double-take when we realised…

Holy cow, our son can talk!

It’s as if Indy suddenly woke up today and decided to speak, “just because he can”.

And his first words of choice…

DA-DA!

YESSSSSS!! (Hi-fives all round…cigars anyone?)

Next on the agenda of his Parliamentary Address…

“I LOVE YOU”
(Admittedly, this was not immediately directed at me, but to a burp cloth he nabbed off the bed… ah, who am I kidding? YES, it was directed squarely at mummy and she deserves that credit, it’s probably the most uttered phrase whispered in our household).

Daddy: “What are you two whispering about?”
Mummy: (sheepishly) “Nothing…”
Indy: (sparkly-eyed…yet, conspiratorially) GRIN-GRIN-GRIN

And finally, in conclusion to his inaugural speech…

“INDY”

Our hearts swelled with pride as he repeated his phrases over and over (so we knew it wasn’t a fluke), and at the rate he’s going, I dare say he’ll be a right little chatterbox.

We glared proudly into each others eyes, it was like we could read each others mind…

Daddy: “Thank god my weeks of training him to say DA-DA have paid off!”
Mummy: “It’s not a contest…damn.”

😉

20130117-100928.jpg