Listen now (32 mins) | TNF Podcast #003: Internal scorecards, practising vulnerability, and raising empathetic kids
I'm a few months away from expecting my first and hearing about the literal awful awful sh*tshow that is parenthood has me on the daily really 1. regretting getting myself into this mess and 2. preparing to numb myself to everything just to show up and do the work every day just so I don't get caught unaware with a small moment of joy to then be hit by a train of just how terrible it's going to be. It's a reason I am considering getting the snip as soon as possible to not be stupid enough to go through it again because it feels like staring into an abyss of "this is your life now, abandon hope all who enter" and to just focus on the distant speck of when they turn 5 or so. The talk of "its not all bad" unfortunately sounds and feels like a striking a match in the face of 70mph winds, it's futile.
Oh well. Deep breath, take a shot, get on with it.
I do have an issue with parents who have more than one after having a -999999999999999999999^100/10 experience and then moan about it all again though, like what is the psychology of flagellating yourself? Just to be a glutton for punishment in the name of "family?" sigh
(rant over, haha)
Loved this interview on burn-out - as someone who burned out before being a parent and also after, and often skates very close to the edge of it more than I would like to admit, this really resonated. I think it's also important to acknowledge we can burnout even doing things we love - work we love doing, kids we love raising - because often those things skate under the radar.
I really appreciate the honesty here - at the top ("you will be tired... all the time") as well as in Brad's admission toward the end that he just doesn't like babies that much (and that sometimes you just need to keep showing up and know that it will get better).
My youngest is currently 11 months and it's a hard age. As I try to better manage my frustrations about the total and constant chaos that a baby at this age causes pretty much on a minute-by-minute basis - and the inability to take your eye off of them for longer than about 30 seconds - I've been thinking a lot lately about how certain aspects of young parenthood are just kind of terrible. It doesn't mean there aren't moments of joy, it doesn't mean it's all bad, and it doesn't take away from all of the other powerful and wonderful feelings that accompany the experience of being a parent to these little proto humans. But sometimes it also just sucks and I think that all parents of small kids need to allow ourselves more permission to feel that, move on, and clean up the next mess.
There's so much social pressure to somehow handle all of this flawlessly while at the same time loving every minute. But the more we can admit to ourselves from time to time that this shit is just really hard, the better we can all be to our kids, to our partners, and to ourselves.