Over the past 10 days since Sloan was born, the one pearl of wisdom that pretty much everyone told us leading up to her birth has proved 100% true: Our lives will change forever.
Yes, it is true. Our lives are so completely different now. In fact, the comparison is pretty much night and day. Although it hasn’t even been a week and a half yet, the days when we lived a carefree existence where we just worried about ourselves seem so long ago.
When family and friends told me that life would never be the same again, they pretty much left it at that. They didn’t really elaborate. I now know why. The condition and responsibility of being a parent is kind of indescribable. Sure, you can describe the physical ways that being a new parent will alter your life (changing diapers, staying up all night, going to appointments, etc.) but those tasks don’t nearly measure up to what takes over in your heart and mind.
However, like I said, it is tough to explain. Here is just a crude example of the thinking that is so hard to describe. The last full day we were in the hospital, I slipped out for 30 minutes so I could swing by my office real fast and pick up a flash drive I would need during the week I would be on leave. I got to campus, parked my car, and walked into the building I work in. Although everything was intact and the exact same from when I left it the day I dashed off to be with Sidney at the hospital, it felt completely different. My computer, my papers, my office supplies seemed to radiate a different vibe. The air in my office didn’t feel the same. The equipment in my office and throughout the building didn’t seem as important. Although Sloan was in the hospital a couple miles away, her birth had changed my outlook on everything, even the way I felt in my office.
I have noticed something else as well. These last several nights after I have been up with Sloan in the wee hours and then put her down, I couldn’t just close my eyes and go right back to sleep. Although sleep deprived and tired, my body and heart wouldn’t let me just immediately doze off like if I had gotten up in the middle of the night to adjust the air conditioning or get a bottle of water. I just couldn’t do it. Rather, I was thinking about how I am now a dad and I have a little girl in the bassinet right next to our bed who depends on me for everything and is the center of my world.
Life has so much more of a purpose now. Even though this “purpose” brings with it a lot more pressure, we wouldn’t want it any other way. This will be the greatest chapter of our lives and my wife and I couldn’t be happier to write it. Don’t Blink.