Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Fifteen Months

One of the most difficult aspects of being a parent, which I'm sure I've touched on before, is the constant struggle between your selfish nature and the part of you that must become selfless. Children don't have a choice. They must deal with those who have decided to raise them, no matter how flawed the individual might be. In order for us all to have survived this long, there was someone who went out of their way to feed us, clothe us, change us, bathe us and just put a roof over our heads when we didn't have the capacity to do these things on our own. Even those people who complain bitterly about their terrible childhood, had parents who stopped being selfish long enough to keep them alive through that horrible era in their life. I'm not saying that it's enough to simply make sure your child makes it to some form of skeletal self identity, but we all are here because of others. We all have an fundamental connection, perhaps extremely limited in some cases, with what it means to be altruistic.

Now, embracing that selflessness is another matter. This is what I'm talking about. The older Lucas gets the less time I have for myself. I'd gotten very comfortable with the life I was living. I could do just about anything I wanted. I could rent a movie and watch it whenever I felt like it. I could sit down and write for four hours straight without realizing the sun had gone down. I could go to the record store and peruse the shelves for as long as I wanted. Well, I guess I can still do that, as long as he doesn't get too heavy. But it's gotten to the point that I can hardly have the time and space to wash dishes anymore, which I should probably consider a blessing in disguise until the dishes pile high and Xtina's eyes flame red.

When I knew that we were going to have a child I was very aware of the fact that I was going to have to change, and if I wasn't then everyone I spoke to constantly reminded me of this little known reality. I didn't focus on this too much at the time seeing as how I am very adaptable. I really have the ability to go with most situations in life and really not allow them to steamroll me. I think that I am now at the point in my time as a parent where I truly understand that this change toward selflessness is inevitable. I can either fight it and make my family life very miserable or go with the flow and grow a bit.

It's very difficult. I haven't spent a lot of time in my life really caring about other human beings, but I also spent a lot of my life being really depressed. In the past few years I've become very aware of the relationship that we share with the cosmic lesson of cause and effect. It's very logical to see that when you are kind to others then the behavior is returned in kind. We experience this every day in our relationships at work and at home. It is also very understandable that it is very easy to over think everything in our lives to the point that we become completely foolish people. So I am going to do the best I can to become a more enlightened person when it comes to my son.

I remember telling Xtina when we found out that we had a son that it was going to be good for me because it was going to force me to grow. I grew up with a father who had a difficult time dealing with all the things that I'm talking about here and I didn't want to have the kind of relationship with my son that my father had with me. The one thing that I do believe is that when we challenge the difficult aspects of our beings then we can overcome all the negativity that always seems to be holding us back. If we remember that then just about anything is possible.

I'm glad that I have a son and I'm very happy that he's come into my life. He's an amazing, growing, bundle of awareness that astonishes me whenever I look into his bright innocence. I want to protect that and nurture it and help it grow into an equally amazing adult. I guess I just need to take some of that determined energy and apply it toward myself so that I can be the cause and have a rewarding effect on my family. They definitely deserve it.

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